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Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 36
   Posted 6/27/2007 6:41 PM (GMT -6)   
My pathology came back on my mastectomy with a residual ductal carcinoma in my left breast with clear margins; it's my lymph nodes causing me some angst. I had 5 of 8 test positive for metastatic disease, no external nodal involvement and no lymphatic involvement.
My oncologist was disappointed, but I don't quite know what it means, he hasn't been the most clear. We're not doing any more chemo/rads, I'm just on tamoxifen and herceptin.
Have I survived my disease? Am I good? Am I still in deep doo-doo?
Questions my oncologist needs to answer - I know.
Just venting a little.
Live Strong
IBC dx August 9/06
chemo August 11/06 - January 8/07
IMRT rads 5 weeks
surgery May 1/07 bilateral mastectomy (left modified radical, right simple)

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1564
   Posted 6/27/2007 9:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Gayle...ironic, isn't it, that none of us knows for sure if we are "survivors" until we die of something else. I'm 12 years, 7 mos out from dx...and I'm still wondering if I'll be a "survivor." I prefer the term "warrior." Every day NED is a victory, to me, and a day worth celebrating.

I'm sure you know that IBC is a treacherous diagnosis. And you are right, the lymph nodes are a sticky wicket. But I will tell you that I met a woman in the waiting room of my onc's office who had IBC, 11 positive nodes, and she was 16 years out from diagnosis. I met another woman at a conference who had IBC and 9 positive nodes who was 3 years out from diagnosis. Both were NED at the time I met them. So while you may be still in "deep doo-doo," as you so aptly put it, I wouldn't consider your situation to be hopeless, by any means.

If you are not entirely comfortable with your oncologist's recommendations, then I hope you will consider a second opinion, if for nothing else than your own peace of mind.

Take care, and let us know how it goes.

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