Newbie

Posted by hkc9890 @hkc9890, Dec 12, 2020

I was diagnosed Wednesday before Thanksgiving, invasive ductal carcinoma, triple negative. Next Tuesday meet the multidisciplinary team. I am a Nurse, but no oncology experience and waiting to hear what’s in store. Anybody have the same diagnosis and have any advice while I’m waiting for the plan?

@bluebird70

Hi all! I have found these sites very informative and thought I would share my story. Firstly I am from Calgary Alberta Canada. Back March 14th of this year I was diagnosed with invasive ductal cancer of the right breast. I was 5 months shy of my regular mammogram. Because of covid everything thereafter was done by phone. I was given my diagnoses over the phone. I had my preop with the surgeon over the phone and was booked for surgery 31 days after diagnosis. My preference would have been to have a bilateral, I was 70 at the time. Because elective surgery was cancelled because of covid that would have been elective so couldn’t do it. I entered the hospital alone and I met the surgeon and anesthetist 5 minutes before being wheeled into surgery. The tumour was 2 cm stage 1 grade 3 with no lymph node involvement. All this was once again given to me over the phone. I have never seen the surgeon since. Met with the oncologist face to face and determined that they wouldn’t take my age as the determining factor for the next steps. Because of my need to do research I found the oncotype testing. When meeting my oncologist it was me that suggested we do this test to determine the next steps. He agreed and 2 weeks later found out that my score was 51 which determined that I was at a high risk of recurrence and that chemo would benefit me.

I am now just about 3 1/2 months from chemo. I am on an AI and My symptoms so far have not been extreme but monitoring the changes as it seems everyday there is something new. From this site I now know I need to determine what my risk factor is if I don’t take it and there are options I have also just booked an oncologist psychologist appt. I have taken everything in stride up to now. Have not been angry never said why me and haven’t shed a tear. I liken this experience to training for a race and raced and crossed the finish line and then ask the question Now What! Not sure if any of this makes sense but I am feeling like there is isolation with this darned covid but there is also isolation in a cancer diagnosis. Thank you everyone for sharing and thank you for listening.
Oma

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Good grief what a voyage! Because of covid, I forced myself to do my own research and so glad I did. Every time I have another onco call, I throw her a question that throws her off and she says she is not sure and cant provide an answer. I already know the answer and just want confirmation. It is my surgeon that has been the most upfront with me. For me, covid delay were a sort of blessing that allowed me to dig in and find my own answers….. I wish you nothing but the best, this site is a blessing of its own.

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@elizm

@roch @syska @hkc9890
Hi, Laurie.
I had genetic testing for breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and ovarian cancer (as they share many similar genes), and it was paid for by my insurance. The results were negative. My oncologist is of the opinion that my breast cancer was caused by taking hormone replacement therapy when going through menopause which is likely, considering that my pathology report showed high levels of estrogen and progesterone.

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That is interesting. I took natural HRT but did not mention it to my onco. I would bet with the knowledge I have now that it definitely had an influence.

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@elizm

@roch @syska @hkc9890
Hi, Laurie.
I had genetic testing for breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and ovarian cancer (as they share many similar genes), and it was paid for by my insurance. The results were negative. My oncologist is of the opinion that my breast cancer was caused by taking hormone replacement therapy when going through menopause which is likely, considering that my pathology report showed high levels of estrogen and progesterone.

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elizm @elizm

The HRT cause could of been a contributing cause to my breast cancer. Never considered before. I had surgical induced menopause at age 40 due to non-cancerous reason. So seeing I went thru menopause at an early age, I was on HRT for over 10 years.

Laurie

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@roch

elizm @elizm

The HRT cause could of been a contributing cause to my breast cancer. Never considered before. I had surgical induced menopause at age 40 due to non-cancerous reason. So seeing I went thru menopause at an early age, I was on HRT for over 10 years.

Laurie

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@roch
That is really interesting – I also had surgical menopause at age 44 and was also on HRT for many years for noncancerous reasons. I wonder how many other women are in this same position.

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@bluebird70

Hi all! I have found these sites very informative and thought I would share my story. Firstly I am from Calgary Alberta Canada. Back March 14th of this year I was diagnosed with invasive ductal cancer of the right breast. I was 5 months shy of my regular mammogram. Because of covid everything thereafter was done by phone. I was given my diagnoses over the phone. I had my preop with the surgeon over the phone and was booked for surgery 31 days after diagnosis. My preference would have been to have a bilateral, I was 70 at the time. Because elective surgery was cancelled because of covid that would have been elective so couldn’t do it. I entered the hospital alone and I met the surgeon and anesthetist 5 minutes before being wheeled into surgery. The tumour was 2 cm stage 1 grade 3 with no lymph node involvement. All this was once again given to me over the phone. I have never seen the surgeon since. Met with the oncologist face to face and determined that they wouldn’t take my age as the determining factor for the next steps. Because of my need to do research I found the oncotype testing. When meeting my oncologist it was me that suggested we do this test to determine the next steps. He agreed and 2 weeks later found out that my score was 51 which determined that I was at a high risk of recurrence and that chemo would benefit me.

I am now just about 3 1/2 months from chemo. I am on an AI and My symptoms so far have not been extreme but monitoring the changes as it seems everyday there is something new. From this site I now know I need to determine what my risk factor is if I don’t take it and there are options I have also just booked an oncologist psychologist appt. I have taken everything in stride up to now. Have not been angry never said why me and haven’t shed a tear. I liken this experience to training for a race and raced and crossed the finish line and then ask the question Now What! Not sure if any of this makes sense but I am feeling like there is isolation with this darned covid but there is also isolation in a cancer diagnosis. Thank you everyone for sharing and thank you for listening.
Oma

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@bluebird70
Hi, Oma — I think your decision to speak with an oncological psychologist was a good one. I only recently learned that there is a thing known as Cancer PTSD which makes a lot of sense. I think that the Covid isolation, coupled with the isolation of cancer concerns, could mean that a lot of us have been stuffing down our feelings. You were wise to seek this resource.

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I too had early menopause due to my ulcerative colitis and continent ostomy surgery at 43. I took hormone replacement for 5 yrs.

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@bluebird70

Hi all! I have found these sites very informative and thought I would share my story. Firstly I am from Calgary Alberta Canada. Back March 14th of this year I was diagnosed with invasive ductal cancer of the right breast. I was 5 months shy of my regular mammogram. Because of covid everything thereafter was done by phone. I was given my diagnoses over the phone. I had my preop with the surgeon over the phone and was booked for surgery 31 days after diagnosis. My preference would have been to have a bilateral, I was 70 at the time. Because elective surgery was cancelled because of covid that would have been elective so couldn’t do it. I entered the hospital alone and I met the surgeon and anesthetist 5 minutes before being wheeled into surgery. The tumour was 2 cm stage 1 grade 3 with no lymph node involvement. All this was once again given to me over the phone. I have never seen the surgeon since. Met with the oncologist face to face and determined that they wouldn’t take my age as the determining factor for the next steps. Because of my need to do research I found the oncotype testing. When meeting my oncologist it was me that suggested we do this test to determine the next steps. He agreed and 2 weeks later found out that my score was 51 which determined that I was at a high risk of recurrence and that chemo would benefit me.

I am now just about 3 1/2 months from chemo. I am on an AI and My symptoms so far have not been extreme but monitoring the changes as it seems everyday there is something new. From this site I now know I need to determine what my risk factor is if I don’t take it and there are options I have also just booked an oncologist psychologist appt. I have taken everything in stride up to now. Have not been angry never said why me and haven’t shed a tear. I liken this experience to training for a race and raced and crossed the finish line and then ask the question Now What! Not sure if any of this makes sense but I am feeling like there is isolation with this darned covid but there is also isolation in a cancer diagnosis. Thank you everyone for sharing and thank you for listening.
Oma

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Thank you for sharing your story. It has been hard through COVID!

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@trixie1313

@roch
That is really interesting – I also had surgical menopause at age 44 and was also on HRT for many years for noncancerous reasons. I wonder how many other women are in this same position.

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trixie1313
FYI….I also had surgical menopause in my 40's and used HRT for decades. However there has been a lot of cancer in my family and my sister had breast cancer and she never took HRT. My mom had osteoporosis so who knows what would have happened to me if I had not taken the HRT.

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@katrina123

trixie1313
FYI….I also had surgical menopause in my 40's and used HRT for decades. However there has been a lot of cancer in my family and my sister had breast cancer and she never took HRT. My mom had osteoporosis so who knows what would have happened to me if I had not taken the HRT.

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I agree….. woulda shoulda coulda…….

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@katrina123

trixie1313
FYI….I also had surgical menopause in my 40's and used HRT for decades. However there has been a lot of cancer in my family and my sister had breast cancer and she never took HRT. My mom had osteoporosis so who knows what would have happened to me if I had not taken the HRT.

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@katrina123
Sounds like there are more and more of us with the same thing. I couldn't have made it without the HRT due to the sweats day and night. We just have a new journey with a new focus now.

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I want to also bring @hopediekman into this discussion as she too has invasive ductal carcinoma, triple negative and recently joined the Breast Cancer group here.

@hkc9890, thinking of you today as you meet with the oncologist and together make decisions about genetic testing and your treatment plan. I look forward to hearing how it went.
PS: I hope you told the oncologist about the amazing guidance and rapid response you got from members here. I'm gobsmacked. Thanks all!

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@colleenyoung

I want to also bring @hopediekman into this discussion as she too has invasive ductal carcinoma, triple negative and recently joined the Breast Cancer group here.

@hkc9890, thinking of you today as you meet with the oncologist and together make decisions about genetic testing and your treatment plan. I look forward to hearing how it went.
PS: I hope you told the oncologist about the amazing guidance and rapid response you got from members here. I'm gobsmacked. Thanks all!

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Hello all! I made it through the appointments and the sea of information! The multidisciplinary team has recommended PET Scan and Breast MRI and I agreed. The Medical Oncologist did such a great job of explaining the need for additional imaging and how it could help with deciding treatment. It was a little hard to hear that I have an aggressive cancer, but very glad we are being thorough. I am confident that I can beat this with the team I have in my corner. I will be starting with a total of 20 weeks of weekly chemo treatments. (12 weeks of Taxol, then 8 weeks of combination Adriamycin & Cytoxan). Next, I met with the surgeon and he was stating I am a candidate for lumpectomy. I would like breast conservation, but not opposed to Mastectomy. I have genetic testing and imaging that could change some of this plan… Finally, I met with the Radiation Oncologist and would need about 4 weeks of therapy, if I was able to get lumpectomy. Of course, all of this depends on pending testing. All of the doctors came in and conveyed the same message and treatment plan. It was actually a good experience, considering what I was there for.

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