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Jeanice’s Story (Breast cancer)

Jeanice's Story (Breast Cancer) On Mothers Day 2010, my life was forever changed. It was the day I discovered a lump in my breast while taking a shower. I panicked and immediately fell to the floor of the shower in tears. I went to my family doctor the following morning. He ordered a mammogram and then I was called back for a diagnostic mammogram and referred to a cancer specialist. I was horrified to find out that I had breast cancer.

I then met with a surgeon who went over my options with me. Knowing my family history of my grandmother (fathers side) and my aunt (mothers side) neither past away from breast cancer, and my aunt is still fighting this disease. And with my healthcare experience I felt like I should take an aggressive approach! I decided to have a full mastectomy.

The following Monday I was in surgery and had a full mastectomy. I also had lymph nodes removed and a port put in. Upon awakening I was not the same to say the least! I wasn’t sure of anything anymore. And to think this would only be the beginning of my journey.

I was told 1 out of 11 lymph nodes where cancer positive. I then went through four months of chemo and 10 weeks of radiation every day. As I thought at the time that all of this treatment and the aggressive decision to have the full mastectomy I would be fine. How wrong I was! March of this year I was told my tumor markers had gone up to 145. I then went for a pet scan and sure enough it had metastasized to six other places all over my chest wall and on my spine.

I have just finished my last chemo. I am now waiting for my next pet scan. I just would like to tell young women how important mammograms are! I was 40 years of age at the first diagnosis and had I went for a mammogram I would not be in this fight for my life! My family and friends have been my strength! And I love all of them!

PLEASE GET YOUR MAMMOGRAMS!!!! God Bless! Keep fighting like a girl!

Submitted 07/24/2013

The informational content of this article is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.

This story is intended to convey a personal experience and, because every person’s experience is unique, should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional healthcare advice.

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  1. Joan Marino Maser

    I found my first lump after my father passed away, I also had a growth on my head that looked like a horn, this was in November of 2000. When I went to the clinic I showed them my horn which was causing horrible headaches. A doctor at the clinic said he would cut it out there so I didn’t have to try to get in a hospital. I told them about the lump in my breast and they said they didn’t treat those there and I would have to find a way to get a mammogram. I called around and no one in manatee county did that . Now if I hillsboro or Pinellas they had programs but Manatee County did not. They cut the lump out of my head and he said it was indenting into my skull. I started working at this point and suddenly one of my eye muscles failed and I was given insurance so I could get surgery on my eye muscles fixed. When I had that surgery the dr said I needed a dr to look at my blood work. Some things did not seem right, I went to a surgeon and he did a needle biopsy immediately. I now had two large lumps and they tested positive for cancer. So in December of 2003 I had a mastectomy, I just had one side done because the two tumors where on that side. and because I had very large breasts they said they would have to do a reduction on the other side. At that time I was wearing a 38E and when they reconstructed my breast they would go to a c cup. So I was to have the mastectomy and and they would put a temporary expander in the right side so reconstruction could begin. I never talked to an oncologist until three weeks after. The surgeon wanted to find the sentinel lymph node to see if it spread, I went in prior to surgery and had it tattoo of blue put to mark it. they removed two large tumors that were in my breast and the sentinel node had an actual tumor growth and they removed all the lymph nodes under my right arm. I started to develop necrosis and had several operations to stop

    • Joan Marino Maser

      If I could have gotten a mammogram earlier it may not have been so bad, but now it was very aggressive according to my doctor. I took shots to stop my hormones and put me into menopause immediately since it was hormone fueled and started tamoxifen. I refused chemo as both my parents were dead from heart disease and my brother had a heart transplant at 45, he died a few years later. So I was taken these shots that made me very ill and found out I had diabetes, which they could not get under control, then I developed fibromyalgia, arthritis, all my bones started getting brittle, a dr told me those shots were dangerous and I should not have taken them so long so I got a total hysterectomy, my heart murmer got more pronounced and they switched me to aromisen to fight the cancer from returning and I got off the shots and found I had pernicious anemia, COPD. my asthma got worse and I now had a sinus tachycardia and gastritis, I have carpel tunnel in both hands and the surgery didn’t help and I have a hiatal hernia and my thyroid started acting up as well as my bladder. I have had two knees replaced and one failed and needs to be done again and I have neuropathy in my hands and feet real bad. So I may have survived the cancer for ten years but the treatment is killing me. And I wonder if I had insurance or if I could have been treated earlier would all this have happened???

      • Jeanice Blizzard

        I am so…… very sorry and I am praying for you. I am in the same boat regarding insurance….. I had to sell everything I had and thank God for the support I get from family and friends! I think it is awful that our country does not provide healthcare to the sick no matter where you live and what car or home you may own! There are so many guidelines and regulations. It makes a person have to finagle and end up with nothing, just to receive Medicaid. I feel like I’m just a number…. The minority!!!!! Its WRONG !!!!!!!!!! God Bless and sending prayers! Jeanice

      • Gina

        God bless you girl, The Tamoxifin is wearing me down, I’m getting tested(EMG) for the pain in my feet and legs. You’re a tough cookie. Stay strong girls. (((HUGS)))

  2. Kim hotaling

    I am so sorry to hear about this…I will pray for your recovery. Sometimes I personally feel that nobody can really understand the full capacity of cancer physically and emotionally like another cancer survivor or current patient. I feel for you and will think of you often!

  3. Viviane Grant

    I didn’t want to get a mammogram, because my brother in law had cancer, a two good friends and my oldest sons mother in law got diagnosed with cancer. I was scared that if I would go I would have it to. Got my reminder in the mail and for 6 months kept putting it off. The breast center called me and ask what my plans were and that I was overdue for a mammogram. So I told them to make me an appointment, since I had them on the phone, this was on at the end of the week. They set me up for a mammogram on 7-24-2012, called me back the next day for an ultrasound, made me come back the next day for a core biopsy . and got the results the next day. Breast cancer. I had a triple negative invasive carcinoma. According the
    doctor an aggressive form of cancer. Did 6 months of chemo and 7 weeks of radiation.

    All you ladies out there do not like I did, delay your mammogram, pleas get it in time.

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