Leanne, Ryland, Kaitlin, Jeff & Maryn

Thursday, September 28, 2006

September 28, 2006

Again, I apologize for the mass email, but this seems to be the best way to get the info out quickly. Here's the latest info on my diagnosis -

The secondary biopsies came back on Wed. Both biopsies on the left side are negative for cancer, but the 2nd lesion on the right side is positive for cancer. I have talked to my surgeon, Oncologist, and Radiation Oncologist, and have made the decision to have a right side mastectomy. I feel this is the best guarantee that I won't have a recurrence...and who needs those things anyway!

Rather than going in for surgery tomorrow for the lumpectomy as originally planned, I will be going into the hospital for surgery on Tuesday and will be staying overnight at least one night. They will do the right side mastectomy, as well as the Sentinel Node Biopsy at that time. Approximately 6-8 wks after the mastectomy, I will then start chemotherapy.

Based on what we know right now (no lymph node involvement - we will find out more after nodes are sent to the lab when removed, and 2 tumors in breast tissue only), I will undergo 36wks of chemo, followed by 6-8 wks of concentrated radiation therapy. The doctors are treating this aggressively because I am young and healthy, and they want to reduce any possible risk of this returning to my left side or any other part of my body.

I have an incredible team of doctors that care a lot about me. They have taken the time to call me outside of appts, ensuring I am the most informed as I possibly can be and that all of my questions are answered.

Although this sounds a little strange, I feel fortunate to have this happening to me. In the short week that I have known, my view on life, my family and friends, my wonderful husband, and beautiful daughter have already changed...and I'm not even a true survivor yet! At 30 yrs old, I feel that through this journey, I am going to learn the most important lessons about life, what's important, and how to cherish my friendships, relationships, and everyone around me....and I have another 70 yrs to put that to good use!

Thank you all so much for your support!

With love,

Friday, September 22, 2006

September 22, 2006: The day after diagnosis

I was diagnosed with breast cancer yesterday. I found a lump in my breast in June and thought it was a clogged duct from breastfeeding Maryn. I went to the Dr. in July who started monitoring my lump. In Aug, I had a mammogram and bilateral ultrasound. The ultrasound identified two lesions on each breast. Of those lesions, one on the right side showed calcifications.

I had a mammotome core biopsy last Friday of the questionable lesion, and received the results yesterday. I have Ductal Carcinoma In Situ (DCIS) that is grade III (the most aggressive). Today I had biopsies of the remaining three lesions and will find out those results next Wed. The doctor also told me today that I am likely in Stage 1 or Stage 2 for the cancer. The biopsy results next week will tell us if the cancer is in both breasts, and if it's contained in the one lesion that I could feel.

I have appts with my Oncologist on Tues, Radiation Oncologist on Wed (as well as getting my biopsy results on Wed), and on Friday, I am scheduled for a lumpectomy on my right breast and a Sentinal Node Biopsy (at least 1-3 nodes will be removed, with more if the cancer has spread to my lymph nodes). I will then likely undergo both chemo and radiation over the next 6 months or so. This plan may change if today's biopsy also comes back positive, but this is what I can tell you right now.

I'm not sure of the details about work yet. I have a very supportive boss, and feel like I will be taken care of in that regard. Pertaining to insurance coverage, I have great support from my insurance representative and have been referred out to an Oncologist who just transferred to my area from Stanford. I'm confident in the care I will be receiving, and I know that I WILL beat this.

That is all I know at this point, but I will keep you posted as I know more.

Thank you for your support!