Had biopsy... cancer found

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cagio1
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 6/12/2009 11:30 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi
I posted a week ago about the microcalcifications and my Ulcerative Colitis and having a biopsy.  I got the news today that the microcalcifications are cancer and it is also in 2 underarm lymph nodes.  What do I do now?  Does this mean it is all over my body?  I am scared again.  This is like a bad dream.  They think the overuse of prednisone to get my UC under control over the years may have helped this become aggressive (was not seen at last years mamo)(I am 40 years old)
 
I have an appointment with surgeon on Monday.
 
Any suggestions... what to ask surgeon?  Do I go to another surgeon?
Thanks for reading this
Chris
DX with (pan colitis) UC 9/02 while pregnant
Boniva Calcium multivitamin
Iron (when issues appear)
Librax, 3x day
Mild bronchial asthma too
OFF PRED !!!
6MP 50mg started beginning of July 08


gma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2921
   Posted 6/13/2009 5:53 AM (GMT -7)   
Cancer is not always seen in a mammogram, so the fact that it was not seen last year is not unusual. Mammograms are not perfect, yet they are one of the best tools we have. That's why we always say to have the biopsy done. Your cancer has been staged with the pathology report. You can have a copy of that report and have it explained to you. Of course it is best if it is not in the lymph nodes but that still does not mean that it has 'gone all over your body' yet. Left alone without treatment that would have happened most likely. My daughter was 39 when she was diagnosed, no lymph nodes were positive, yet in eight years it was found in lymph nodes and bones. HOWEVER she was not good about her follow up checkups and mammos and it worried me over those eight years. Do everything you can to fight and be sure to follow up. There are many women with breast cancer who do well with some pretty bad sounding beginning diagnosis. Cancer is now being treated like a chronic illness and treatment improves all the time. Keep in touch here and we will help all we can. Hugs MK


JUJU8872
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 349
   Posted 6/13/2009 7:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Sorry this has happened to you. I am a survivor - 4 1/2 years and am currently undergoing breast reconstruction. Your doctor will tell you what you need to know, but you will need to write down the answers so you can remember what he says. Since you already know 2 nodes positive, ask if they will do a sentinel node, how long it will take to recover, whether you have an option as to the type of surgery, etc., any physical limitations. Also, surgeon will not know your course of treatment until after a full pathology report comes in following surgery. It is likely then that you will be referred to a medical onconlogist or even a radiation oncologist.
 
You did not say whether there was b/c in your family. For me, I had an aunt, a sister, then me (along with a couple of cousins). While my family does not appear to be BRAC 1 or 2 positive (inherited trait), my daughter first exhibited symptoms at 32 with mastectomy at 33.
 
You are not alone. There will be many women here who can answer your questions. Post whenever you like with questions, feelings, and someone will be here to help. 
 
Judy
P.S.  I have been on both sides of this disease, and it is tougher on your family than it is on you!

cagio1
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 56
   Posted 6/13/2009 9:23 AM (GMT -7)   
Thank you all for taking the time to write back.  I have read the post about tears and sent it to a few people in my family.  I am not concerned about the pain I am concerned about the fact because of the UC I already have a compromised immune system.  I feel like I am at the starting gate of the journey and I am carrying a 500 lb gorrilla on my back already.  I am afraid that this has spread even further  because of my lack of immune system.  They said they will only know after surgery.  I see one surgeon on Monday, I want to schedule another for later in the week and I am checking out a hospital in Philadelphia that is supposed to be great with this.  If there is anyon that lives in NJ, any suggestions on hospitals besides Sloan Kettering in NYC?  My insurance is good but somewhat limited.
 
I know the road ahead is long.  I thank you for responding.  Please keep me and my family (husband and 6 year old) in your prayers.
Chris


DX with (pan colitis) UC 9/02 while pregnant
Boniva Calcium multivitamin
Iron (when issues appear)
Librax, 3x day
Mild bronchial asthma too
OFF PRED !!!
6MP 50mg started beginning of July 08


DX with (pan colitis) UC 9/02 while pregnant
Boniva Calcium multivitamin
Iron (when issues appear)
Librax, 3x day
Mild bronchial asthma too
OFF PRED !!!
6MP 50mg started beginning of July 08


barkyboys
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1564
   Posted 6/13/2009 2:23 PM (GMT -7)   
So sorry to hear your news. As someone said, breast cancer, especially in young women, is not always seen on a mammogram. I had two types of breast cancer in the same breast, and neither were seen on mammogram. I had three positive nodes. I was 36 at dx, and that was 15 years ago. Cancer in the nodes is an indication that cancer cells have gotten into other parts of the body. Your oncologist will probably do scans before you begin treatment, but these tests don't always pick up micrometasteses, which are just a few cancer cells here or there that may have gotten free..these tests find more significant "chunks" of cancer, such as a tumor or lesion. (It takes about 8 years for a breast cancer to be sizeable enough to be seen on a mammogram). That's why they will recommend that you have chemotherapy, regardless of the scan results, the hope being that, any stray cells that may be left behind will be eradicated. I don't know what effect Prednisone, over time, has on breast cancer, so I can't help you there. I'm sure there is someone in our midst who has experience with that, though, as we all have different backgrounds and histories. I know when I ws going through chemo, I was on dexamethasone for the first few days following every treatment, and that is a steroid as well.

So don't give up hope for your future yet! We'll keep you in our thoughts and prayers. And good luck! Keep us posted on how you are doing.

Hugs...
BEV
"There's a difference between a philosophy and a bumper sticker."  --Charles Schulz


Lmmackey
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 316
   Posted 6/13/2009 5:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Chris,

I'm so very sorry to hear your dx. You are young, however, and even with the UC, you still have your youth on your side. My suggestions would be to really get into a very healthy diet, lots of fruits and veggies! Keep a positive outlook which can be very helpful to both the BC and UC. There are so many of the ladies here who have had positive lymph nodes and are cancer free many, many years later! There are so many treatments now to work with every stage and every aspect of BC that you need to save your energy to heal, not worry! I know I probably sound like a horrible recording on someone's voicemail, but it really just saps all of your energy to worry. Come to us anytime and vent and yell. We will go the mile with you! My heart goes out to you, as I remember it all too well! I also had little ones at home (7 & 10) and it sucks and it is scary, but just hang in there!!!

Let's push to get them to find that cure, ladies!!!!!

~Lauré
The finger of God touches your life when you make a friend.
----Mary Dawson Hughes---


debbiR
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 730
   Posted 6/13/2009 9:17 PM (GMT -7)   
I am so sorry to hear about your diagnosis. You have been given some great advice from the ladies. I know how frightened you are, we have all traveled down that road. It has been 8 years since my initial diagnosis and 6 years since my recurrance. I still get nervous when I have to have the PET scan, etc.
 
Here are a couple of suggestions that I will share with you regarding your visit to the surgeon:
 
1.  Write down any and all questions, such as the ones that you have asked in your post. It doesn't matter how silly or small they may seem. Then when you are meeting with your surgeon, ask those questions.
 
2.  Take one or two peeps with you when you go for the appointment. You will be given loads of information, just a small amount that you will most likely retain. With 2 extra sets of ears and hands, you will not only have the answers to questions and discussion written down but you will also have others listening and retaining this info.
 
3.  If you have a small recording device, take it with you. If ths surgeon says that he/she doesn't want the conversation recorded, then GET UP AND RUN.
 
4.  If you don't feel comfortable with the surgeon, make an appointment with another one. Ask your friends who they like. The most important thing is that you have confidence in your medical team.
 
The first surgeon that I saw, I decided after about 5 mins that if he was the last surgeon on earth, he wouldn't touch me. The Lord led me to the most wonderful, caring surgeon and we are still friends today.
 
Just remember, we are here for you. We have been down the path that you are taking now. Ask your questions. Share your fears.
 
Hugs
 
Deb
 

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