need advice Please

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Sniper
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Date Joined Feb 2004
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   Posted 6/19/2007 8:49 PM (GMT -7)   
 My wife has just been dx with breast cancer. She has had a lumpectomy done on both breast. Both were cancer. The surgeon  says biopsy shows the cancer was completely removed , but gives her two choices. Chemo plus radiation , or full mastectomy both breast and then chemo. He has sent her to an oncologist (spl) to help her with the choice. Any words of wisdom here ? I am really at a loss as to what to tell her, beside the fact that I support any choice she makes and love her dearly no matter what. I just want her healthy..Thanks for any input....
If we would read the secret history of our enemies,we would find in each mans life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.


gma
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Date Joined Jul 2003
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   Posted 6/20/2007 2:05 PM (GMT -7)   
OK My humble opinion is that if you both can live with bilateral mastectomies, that would certainly seem to be the safest. And reconstruction can be done if she wants to have it done. Many women life a long life with having a lumpectomy and radiation but with cancer in both breasts to begin with I would opt for the most aggressive treatment possible. You didn't give a hint as to age or any of the report scenarios. I hope she has copies of all her pathology reports so you can make good decisions. Many of the women here can help read those reports, too. Hugs to you both as you are making decisions. Mary K.


coopfesta
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Date Joined Sep 2003
Total Posts : 1373
   Posted 6/20/2007 2:57 PM (GMT -7)   
MK was right on, as far as I'm concerned.  I do want to say, though, that you sound great!  I wish my husband actually took the time to do this type of stuff.  Keep on doing this.!
"Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall." -Confucius
Don't knock on Death's Door.  Ring the bell and run.  He hates that.

Ellen


auntkay
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Date Joined Apr 2004
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   Posted 6/20/2007 5:52 PM (GMT -7)   
gosh Sniper i wish i could offer up some advice, but i haven't gone thru to much myself. I have had to come and ask a few questions of my own to these wonderful women here. Everyone here has been very helpful and i'll keep you and your wife in my prayers. Take care, Kay

possitive
Regular Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 239
   Posted 6/20/2007 8:40 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sniper,I had a double Mastectomy.I had a choice for a Lumpectomy or Mastectomy and i chose Mastectomy and never regretted it.I hope the best for your wife.You sound like a very loving and caring husband,Bless You!  Tammy

 GOD WILL NOT GIVE US MORE THAN WE CAN HANDLE!!!!!


barkyboys
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Date Joined Jul 2003
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   Posted 6/20/2007 9:07 PM (GMT -7)   
Most surgeons require a clean margin around a cancer site that is larger than what is typically removed in a biopsy. I would ask the surgeon about how much clean margin there was.

Personally, I would choose mastectomy over lumpectomy. The less breast tissue you have, the less likely another cancer could develop.

How old your wife is could also be a factor in the best decision. Did she have a sentinal node biopsy, to see if the cancer had spread to axillary lymph nodes?

Your wife and you will get the best information from the surgeon and the oncologist, who know the answers to some of these mitigating circumstances.

Good luck to your wife and to you. She is fortunate to have a guy who is obviously so supportive and concerned about her.

BEV

Sniper
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Date Joined Feb 2004
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   Posted 6/20/2007 9:42 PM (GMT -7)   
My wife is 55. Border line per the doctors as she could go either way. Older and it would almost be a sure thing. Yes they did check the lympth nodes and there was no cancer there either arm. She does have the pathology report but I am not sure about the clear margin. The surgeon did say they had it early and that the report shows clear tissue around the lumps removed. I am trying to get my wife to ask some questions here but I think she wants more answers from the doctors before ..
Thank you all for the answers. They confirm what I am thinking but I want her to make her decision based on her research and talks with the doctors. I have told her that I love her no matter what. I am not in love with her breasts, I am in love with her. I pointed out that I have many bad scars and she still loves me. I just dont want to say are do something that will make her feel bad about any choice.. Thanks again to everyone..
If we would read the secret history of our enemies,we would find in each mans life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.


stressed in bama
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 33
   Posted 6/21/2007 11:54 PM (GMT -7)   
 I can't speak for anyone else but I was diagnosed with breast cancer last year and had a lumpectomy. Said didn't need chemo but about 30 radiation treatments. They told me also they didn't see anything more in the realm of margin and my lympnodes were fine.I am sure theyy gave you tons of literature to read. I read it several times and I pointed out to them that their own materials said the chances were the same with or without the radiation. There is no guarntee that it will do what it is intended to do.(radiation). We all have to make our own choices and I wish you the very best in whatever you decide to do. :-)

Brnadebt
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 688
   Posted 6/24/2007 9:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sniper

Just my 2 cents worth but if I had it to do all over I would have had the mastectomy to start with. I had a lumpectomy, chemo and then radiation only to have it come back 1 1/2 years later. I have since had a mastectomy ad reconstruction and could not be happier with the results. I was very lucky to have a husband like you who is there and very supportive. I will keep both of you in my thoughts and prayers.

L&H
Bernadette
 
 


jko
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 14
   Posted 6/24/2007 9:26 PM (GMT -7)   
  My husband was really supportive when I was diagnosed with invasive ductal carcinoma in November, 2006.  He didn't try to tell me what to do but he did support me by going to doctor appointments with me, listening to me as I talked about options, etc.  You have done a lot to support her already.  She will need your support, too, after any kind of surgery. 
 
I am sending my prayers, hope and hugs to you.
 
jko :-)

Sniper
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Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 6518
   Posted 6/26/2007 10:20 PM (GMT -7)   
Its no longer a choice for her. She has two different kinds of cancer. One slow growing and the other very aggressive. What are the odds of this??anyway she will have bilateral mastectomy this Monday and then chemo in 4 to six weeks followed by a pill regimen for about 5 years to deal with the slow growing cancer. One cancer is hormone related the other is not.
Thanks for the prayers jko and for any other kind thoughts from anyone else. I am and will be as much support to her as I can be for as long as I live. I know women and men look at things like this with different thoughts. So if I can avoid putting my foot in my mouth I feel I can be a big help to her. Any help here ladies will be very much appreciated...
If we would read the secret history of our enemies,we would find in each mans life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.


gma
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Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2921
   Posted 6/27/2007 2:22 AM (GMT -7)   
Yes, it is possible for the two different kinds of cancer. One of our group had a different cancer in her second breast about eight years after the first. She is one who had a double mastectomy and did not have reconstruction. She is about your wife's age, too. I would say in the mid 50s and later perhaps it is easier to live without reconstruction. More carefree. When dressed up you can wear prosthesis and look feminine, but otherwise can do what you want and feel as comfortable as you want. Reconstruction is much harder surgery than mastectomy surgery. Take care and tell your wife we all send our best wishes. Mary K.


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 6/28/2007 8:35 AM (GMT -7)   

Hey Sniper,

Hello, I am Kitt. My best friend has a long family history of breast cancer. She found the lump in her breast and was offered the same options as your wife.

We are nurses and worked in ER, so she went to our Director of Emergency Medicine and he said to her, "If it was my wife I would encourage her to have the bilateral mastectomy"

My friend did this and had the breast implants inserted during the original surgery.

Good luck with your decision.


Respectfully
Kitt
 
Moderator Anxiety ~ Panic Disorders

Dx: Anxiety/Panic, Depression 
______________________________________________________
"If you doubt you can accomplish something, then you can’t accomplish it. You have to have confidence in your ability, and then be tough enough to follow through.” 
~Rosalyn Carter


Sniper
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Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 6518
   Posted 6/28/2007 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks Ladies. My wife does not think reconstruction is worth the pain and I agree with her whole heartedly. Heck, after healing she can be much cooler in the Louisiana heat and humidity with out that bra. I know as a man I have a different take on this , but I dont think I would hold on to a part of my body that was trying to kill me, even the parts that are defining as male. I would still be as much of a man without them and she will be just as beautiful and feminine. I will do my best to get her here to talk to you wonderful ladies , but she has to set her own time to do what she needs to do. Thanks again and I will stay in touch..
If we would read the secret history of our enemies,we would find in each mans life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.


stkitt
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 6/28/2007 6:44 PM (GMT -7)   

Dear Sniper,

You are one heck of a great man and husband. Your wife is lucky to have you and you to have her. cherish each other and I wish  you peace.

 


Respectfully
Kitt
 
Moderator Anxiety ~ Panic Disorders

Dx: Anxiety/Panic, Depression 
______________________________________________________
"If you doubt you can accomplish something, then you can’t accomplish it. You have to have confidence in your ability, and then be tough enough to follow through.” 
~Rosalyn Carter


Sniper
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 6518
   Posted 7/3/2007 9:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Just an update. She had surgery Monday. She is home and doing well. I am doing my best with drains and help with medical things but mostly I am keeping her spirits up as much as possible. I am so proud of her strength of will. The road will be long but the first step is behind us now and we will go the distance. Thanks for the prayers and kind thoughts. And stkitt,,I try,,But I always tease her by saying,,she sure picked a lemon in the garden of love..
If we would read the secret history of our enemies,we would find in each mans life sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.


babyseeester
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Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 826
   Posted 7/5/2007 7:48 PM (GMT -7)   
You are a great help to your wife.  I wish my DH had done some of the things you are doing.  I'm glad she is home resting.  This disease brings out the strenght in all of us.
L & H,
Kathy


Nemekke
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 309
   Posted 7/15/2007 11:43 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Sniper,

I was peeking through the boards and saw your post about your wife.  I had bilateral mastectomies exactly one year ago today, and also underwent chemotherapy and radiation, and now I'm on the Tamoxifen for five years.  It is rough, no way around that, but it is doable.

I asked my boyfriend what his thoughts are, a year later...his reply:  "I miss them....oh boy do I miss them!!!  But I love you and want you more..."

My scars did not heal very well - very tight and puckery.....some could say they are ugly.  But they are awesome on Halloween - I can draw red lips around them...and a tongue...and blue eyes....and I have a toothless old mouth!!! LOL

It's all in our perspective of things and how we see our world.  I see the body as a shell, or vehicle...and just like our cars, we get banged up a bit out on the freeways.  Just do what you are doing - loving her and being there, and let the doctors do the rest.  I will keep both of you in my thoughts...

*Hugs*

Michelle


gma
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Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2921
   Posted 7/17/2007 5:52 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sniper, I just took the time to catch up on this thread. I am glad to hear your wife had her surgery and is doing so well. I agree with your earlier statement that LA heat is miserable (like TX where I live) and to go braless would be so much more comfortable. I am sure you are taking good care of her and she appreciates it. Keep trying to talk her into coming to talk to us. MK


eveie
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 89
   Posted 7/23/2007 6:45 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Sniper....
It is so nice to know that there are other husbands out there like mine. You are a wonderful man and when you get frustrated and you will at times feel like you are no hlp to your wife...we can help you. I also had a bilaterial mastectomy last year and my husband doesn't care if I have reconstruction or not. He just wants me alive and healthy. I understand your wife about not wanting the surgery as I am up and down about reconstruction. But she can have it anytime, there is no time limit.
You remember to take care of yourself as well.
Eve
The true joy of life is in the journey


baq46
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 8/3/2007 4:34 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, I am new to this board. I have been diagnosed with Stage II ductal Carcinoma with some DCIS. I had a lumpectomy about 3 weeks ago. I have been found to be Hormone Neg. and HER 2 positive. I have been advised to have a mastectomy. I have chosen to have a Bilateral in a little over a week. My mother died from Breast Cancer 30 years ago at age 47. I am 47 and scared to death. Thank God for Xanax. I so appreciate the support of Mastectomy/Bilateral or not.

I have not met with the oncologist yet, which is driving me mad. But I do finally have an appt. the day before the surgery. I am questioning myslef if I should have both or one. I know that my type of Cancer is fairly agressive type, yet still somewhat early in stage. Can anyone tell me if they think I will have both Chemo and radiation? I have had trouble finding info on this with the HER 2 positive thing going on. I had originally thought I could avoid radiation by having the mastectomy. I will do it of course, but I have to rethink my reconstruction options. Just want a few opinions to prepare me. A week is a long time to know the oncologists opion. My margins are clear, nodes looked good at lumpectomy but have not been tested yet. Any opionions to help me prepare for any of this would be greatly appreciated.
I have a great husband like Viper, but some of these issues I have to resolve on my own.
Thank You

baq46
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 8/3/2007 4:36 PM (GMT -7)   
Sorry, I meant Sniper not Viper. Keep up the good support and wish your wife well.

eveie
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 89
   Posted 8/3/2007 4:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Bag46,
Just remember you don't have to have reconstruction right away. It's your choice. My surgeon wanted me to wait on reconstruction so I had time to get used to all that happened too me. I have to say...I am not that unhappy with the way I look. He did a beautiful job and I wear my scars as a badge of honor. I walk around the house topless all of the time now...so there are some benefits. Just get the info you need...make a list of questions to take to the oncologist. I got marked for radiation and then when the Radiologist found out I was having the gene tests and then the bilaterial, they told me that I didn't need the radiation, but everyone is different. My mother died at 49 from Colon Cancer so I understand where you are coming from. But I just turned 50 and that makes me very happy. You are going to be ok...just reach out. Alot of people vary on their opinions of doing both breasts or just the one...I opted for both as I have the genes. Just remember you have choices and you will do what you feel is best for you.
Take care,
xoxxox
eveie
The true joy of life is in the journey


baq46
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 8/3/2007 7:02 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you Eveie,
My surgeon does not want me to have reconst. until later either. I guess they want to make sure everything is going well and healed. I'm not sure why, but I guess that would be one more thing for me to stress on. There is just so much to take in and learn in a shor amount of time. Do you have any experience with Horm. neg. HER+. I know it's not the best outcome, but not the worst either. I am thankful for the discovery for Hercepton which I am assuming I will be given. I had a feeling going into the lumpectomy that they would say (C). Finding out that I fell into the 20-25% group took the sails out of me. I am definately going to have the genetic testing done, I have 3 sisters, 7 neices, and a daughter. I am going to make sure that they have all the info I can gather for them if God forbid, it strikes one of them. My mother's was diagnosed very late, 30 years ago and my poor Dad is trying to tell me what he can, but in the old days they went for Raddicle mastect. and I think she just had radiation. If she was HER 2 + she didn't stand a chance. She died within 8 months. I am just so hopeful the next 30 years will bring about great break throughs for the generation's to come.
I just moved 1000 miles away from all my friends 6 months ago, so I have felt a little alone at times. They are all rallying to the e-mail and phone for me. I have an all out request for all the funny stories and such they can send. I am leaving for San Diego tomorrow for a week at the beach with most of my immediate family and kids. It should be a great distraction and strength building for my surgery on the 14th. I am looking forward to the close friendships I should make at the Cancer Center over the next months.
Also, I am already planning my all out Personal Breast Buddy campaigne that I am going to take on. I feel that this whole thing should have been found last year, and do to my lack of knowlege and a lack of checking out a palpable thickening that was not checked out after the mammo came back normal has unfortunately left me in a worse situation. I am going to make sure everyone in my life knows that Mammography is not the only thing to count on, when something is felt. Amazingling, a week before I had my lumpectomy, one of my best friends called to tell me she had Breast Cancer. She started Chemo last week. We have each other now for support, and since our husbands are also good friends they have each other too.

I will try and remember to find my joy in each day of my journey. In spite of everything I have a lot to be Thankful for.

eveie
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 89
   Posted 8/3/2007 7:09 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Baq,
I unserstand all you are saying. I found that sometimes too much information is not so good, but that's me. If you need any support, please feel free to e-mail me. It sounds like you have a good plan. For now...go to San Diego and enjoy yourself. Remember to keep your sense of humor and never forget how strong you are. I'm in California as well. It sounds like you have a great group of friends no matter how far away..they are still close in your heart.
Have a good weekend.
eveie
The true joy of life is in the journey

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