Hi Karla! Welcome. I am sorry that you have bc but you have found a great group of women here. I'm glad that Joyce sent you. I was diagnosed with bc, Stage III, 2001. I had 19 of 21 lymph nodes involved. 3 different tumors. I had A/C followed by 12 weeks of Taxol. I was in a clinical study of the A/C w/ and w/out Herceptin. It has been proven now that women that take the Herceptin either with the A/C or right after they finish the A/c have a 80% chance of recurrance. I was in the group that didn't get the herceptin. You might want to talk with your onco about this. I didn't do alternative therapy. I did attempt to eat good, healthy foods and listen to my body and rest when it told me to. (there were many times that I didn't do well with either of the above) lol
Hang in there. Remember, sometimes you can overload yourself with research and info. A dear friend told me to always remember to find sites that were well known because anyone can post and make you think they are expert. There are lots of gals here that will be able to give you info. We are here to help you.
I was dx in Feb 2001, and my cancer was very similar to yours... Stage IIB (4.5 cm tumor) 5 of 49 lymph nodes involved, grade 3, her2neu 3+++ , er-/pr-. They thought mine may have been inflammatory bc (my aunt was dx in 1998 with same bc) but they weren't sure because I didn't have the skin involvement. I have surgery first (bilateral mastect.) and then 3 rounds of A/C, 3 rounds of FEC, 4 rounds of taxotere, and 1 year of Herceptin. It took almost a year to complete my treatment. But happy to say, so far I am cancer-free, and my aunt just celebrated 6 years! Please know that there is hope, even for the extra-bad-a** inflammatory bc. There is a great website called www.ibcsupport.org for those with inflammatory bc. There is much to be hopeful about, especially with Herceptin... did you see the recent article on it? let me find the link....
This is very promising news for those of us who are er- and can't take tamoxifen!
Please know that you can find lots of support here and on the ibcsupport.org site; the dx of inflammatory is NOT a death sentence, it just means you need some extra chemo.... I had a friend tell me once that she was told that high-grade cancers can respond BETTER to chemo that slow-growing, resistant ones. I don't know if that's true, but I like to think it is.
Hang in there Karla.... ((((HUG)))) all is definitely not lost. Keep your chin up and fight!
I forgot to mention one of the BEST sites for keeping up with the latest cancer news and conferences..
www.breastcancer.org ! This is one fabulous site... I don't give out money easily but I have donated to them. I think their site is top-notch. Hope you find it useful.
HI, Deb, Claire, MK, Julie, Stephanie and Lauri,
I am so glad a found this site. Thank you so much for all your support and encouraging words. You girls made me feel better.
I am 43 y.o., married, two sons 10 & 3 1/2, from California, LA.
I haven't met Joyce yet. She sent me a message to go to this site, because she was on her way to Florida, and she would not be able to help me the way she wanted to.
I will check it out all the sites you sent me , and I will keep in touch.
Once again, thank you.
Hugs, love you all.
Hi Toni! Mary K is so right. Please let us know where you live so we can help. There are many wonderful physicians out there whose main concern is a woman's health and not the almighty dollar. When I was diagnosed w/ bc, I was working 39 1/2 hrs a week for a company. Suppose to go full time for several month prior to my diagnosis. So, I had NO insurance. I was helping raise 2 granddaughters and didn't have any extra money. I knew the oncologist that I wanted to use. I called and explained no insurance but that I was applying for medicaid. No problem. My first chemo was at the hospital so that the pharm company could provide it at no cost to me. I interviewed a couple of surgeons and when I found the right one, I told her the insurance saga. No problem. She waived her fee and got the hospital to wait to bill until my medicaid was approved. So, don't let not having health insurance stop your search for good medical care.