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Breast cancer question?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Bassist Jay, Apr 15, 2010.

  1. Bassist Jay

    Bassist Jay

    Dec 28, 2009
    Sterling, CO.
    Endorsed by K.B. Guitars, Nordstrand Audio Pickups, Von York Strings and Gallien-Krueger Amps.
    Hey my fellow TB'ers, On my birthday a few weeks back, my wife found a lump in her boob. She went and got a mammogram done and they called her the next day to get another one done along with an ultrasound. She did the second mammogram yesterday and ultrasound and we got the results back today. They said it is not a cyst but they are unsure of what it is. She now needs to go in and have it surgically removed. From there, they will tell if it is cancerous or not. Needless to say, she and I are a little worried. I was wondering if any of you have been through this or something similar before and what to expect from here on out. We are praying that it is obviously not cancer but I am worried about my wife.
    Any advice that you guys have, would be welcomed!
  2. Thor

    Thor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

  3. MatticusMania

    MatticusMania LANA! HE REMEMBERS ME!

    Sep 10, 2008
    Pomona, SoCal

    My parents recently both turned 60. Be it that theyre getting older they decided to go get themselves check out. The doctors found something with my Mom that they didnt like. Something that could have been cancer. Her results came back stating that it was not. So, theres hope!
  4. Jay,
    Sorry to hear this and I hope all works out well.
    My wife and I have been going through this for a while so I can share our story. Not for the squeemish. They have come a long way in treating this over the last few years.
    In 1992 a regular mammogram found an unusual mass, she had it tested (a wire biopsy- ouch!) and it turned out to be cancerous. She then had an immediate lumpetcomy on one breast. It did not alter her shape or anything, although 2 months of almost daily radiation left her skin with some minor issues. The protocol did not call for chemo at the time. She was declared cancer free. Fast forward to Feb 2009, a regular mammogram showed an anomaly, but, we were told, "its probably nothing". "Nothing my arse" said LOML, "tests NOW!" Not one to be messed with, they did tests, found cancer, did a single masectomy. Treatment called for chemotherapy this time. A few months later we were told to get genetic testing for BRCA2, a cancer suseptability protein. She came out positive. Masectomy #2 but no more chemo. She is now very much on the mend, is cancer free, and, at 51 years old, is bossing around a well known plastic surgeon and looking forward to getting a front end rebuild to rival a 24 year old. I will be buying a nice shiny dancing pole for the living room for her birthday!:hyper: She starts a new job in 2 weeks.
    A few points of advice: study up, ask lots of questions, do not be intimidated by the doctors, and if your gut tells you something is amiss, it probably is. Get a 2nd opinion- or a third. Advocate for yourself. If it is cancer, don't panic, caught early it is very treatable. Have your wife get the BRC2 testing. Some Drs will tell you this is for decendants of certain Jewish sects, but it is not. It will tell your wife the likelihood of additional cancers in her or her family or children. In our case having the testing done early would have avoided having seperate surgeries months apart. Either way, ask about it, we had it done by Yale Cancer center. You will need to manage treatment, care, insurance etc like its a business.
    My intention is not to scare you, and I certainly pray your outcome is a good one. PM me if you have any other questions, but your doctors will have plenty to tell you.
    Best of luck,
  5. drteeth


    Apr 1, 2008
    Leuven, Belgium
    Cancer is not the semi-death sentence it was 20 years ago anymore. Due to advances in medicine, a lot more cancers can be treated with good rates of succes. Do not despair. There is always hope. Allthough the treatment of cancer is highly dependent on the cancer itself, and will differ for you, I can share some experiences here.

    I went through it at a fairly young age (18). First I had surgery to remove some tumors, then I had 4 months of chemo, then I had surgery again to remove the remaining tumors.

    My experiences:

    Chemo sucks. A lot. BUT, there are treatments for many of the nasty side effects nowadays (I am talking about fever, nauseau, vomiting, and the like here). Having said that, it was not a fun experience. Then again, the chemo I went through was one of the most agressive treatments, because I was young (and therefore able to recuperate quicker) and because the cancer was very agressive too. The treatments I had consisted of 4 week-long chemos, with three weeks in between. Between these sessions, I had to come back in for a day to receive more chemo.

    In the treatments, expect to be very sick. Allthough many side effects are largely surpressed, the treatment sucked the life right out of me. No energy at all. By the end of each week I felt like I aged 40 years. Seriously, I was unable to walk out of the hospital doors. I had to take a weelchair. Between the treatments, I recuperated very quickly, up to the point where I could more or less function. By function, I don't mean you'll be able to do physical labour, but you will not be very sick.

    All in all, the treatment (very big for me here, your experience will vary) was bad, but not as bad as it would have been 20 years ago.

    Hang in there, maybe it is not even cancer. And if it is cancer, there will be a high chance of curing your wife.

    Oh yeah: if it is cancer, make sure you have something to take your wife's mind of things in the better periods. It may sound basic, but that's how I pulled through: by distracting myself.
  6. Bassist Jay

    Bassist Jay

    Dec 28, 2009
    Sterling, CO.
    Endorsed by K.B. Guitars, Nordstrand Audio Pickups, Von York Strings and Gallien-Krueger Amps.
    Thank you all for your responses! We will know more tomorrow and I will keep everyone updated on her condition. This last year has been a very rough one on us all. Last May my Mother in law passed away from a disease called Schleroderma. Then a few weeks later we found out that our youngest son needed open heart surgery to replace his aortic valve. We knew that was eventually going to happen because he was born with the heart defect. His surgery was by far the most stressful thing for us to go through. He had the surgery in July and has recovered great. But now we are going through this trial.

    Again, I appreciate everyones help. Once we know more we will share with everyone what we know.
  7. DrSmaggs


    Oct 15, 2003
    Endorsing Artist:
    Keep us posted. There is always hope, for sure. You're doing all you can do at this point and that's a great way to go about it.
  8. Basshappi


    Feb 12, 2007
    Had my bout with cancer too.

    Hang in there, try to stay focused and positive. Early detection and treatment is key and that sounds like your wife has.

    Learn everything you possibly can and ask a lot of questions. If the doctors tell you things you don't understand or are uncomfortable with, keep insisting on clarification until you do. Most doctors will be very patient and understanding because they realize this is a very stressful situation. If your doctor isn't, get a different doctor. They also will not be (should not be) bothered by you getting secondary opinions from other doctors, it's more or les SOP these days.

    You are probably going to learn more about the medical and insurance professions than you ever wanted to but just keep plowing through it and you'll be fine.

    Good luck, keep a positive attitude (this is very important) and hang in there!

    Keep us informed.
  9. Thor

    Thor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    This may not be the very best place for medical advice, but
    TB is good at moral support. Best of luck.
  10. fishtx

    fishtx Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    Endorsing Artist: Genzler Amplification/Spector Basses/Mojo Hand FX
    My thoughts and prayers go out to the OP...Stay strong and supportive...

    My wife is a 29 month Breast Cancer survivor, and is doing great...we sponsor a team at the Susan G. Koman Race for the cure now, and many friends and family walk and participate with our cause every year...
  11. buzzbass

    buzzbass Shoo Shoo Retarded Flu !

    Apr 23, 2003

    We went through a similar deal a couple of years ago. Fortunately my wife's turned out to be benign (sp?). She's decided to give back, by becoming very active in the Livestrong foundation. Best of luck to you both
  12. Bassist Jay

    Bassist Jay

    Dec 28, 2009
    Sterling, CO.
    Endorsed by K.B. Guitars, Nordstrand Audio Pickups, Von York Strings and Gallien-Krueger Amps.
    We met with the surgeon today. My wife will have it removed next Thursday and then I guess it will be a few more days before we find out if it is cancerous or not. Again, I really appreciate all of your guys' kind words and help!
  13. Bassist Jay

    Bassist Jay

    Dec 28, 2009
    Sterling, CO.
    Endorsed by K.B. Guitars, Nordstrand Audio Pickups, Von York Strings and Gallien-Krueger Amps.

    Well, today we got the news that we did not want to hear. My wife has breast cancer! The type she has is the most common type that women get. The doctor also told us that there are three different levels with one being the best and three being the worst. Rochelle is in the middle with number two.

    The choices of treatment are for her to have surgery to remove parts of the breast and then have radiation or to simply remove the entire breast and everything with it. The doctor said having the entire breast removed was probably the best option as it leaves the best chance of the cancer never returning. As a result, my wife will be having her right breast removed on May 12th. The doctor also said that later on my wife could have re constructive surgery as well.

    The only thing that we can do now is pray and trust in the Lord! He has got us through other things in the past and He will get us through this as well!

    Prior to this, we have participated in a few relay for life walks to raise awareness for breast cancer but now they will have more meaning. I actually plan on doing what I can do from here on out to help raise awareness and help find a cure.
  14. drteeth


    Apr 1, 2008
    Leuven, Belgium
    I'm sorry to hear that. Hang in there.

    On the bright side, it is treatable!

    Best to you and your loved ones.
  15. My mother just passed 5 years cancer free after having a masectomy. She approached it with a good attitude and while she felt ill at times from the chemo, she generally pulled through the ordeal well. Best of luck to your wife!

  16. Bummer. Well, this is what we were all hoping we wouldn't hear. Often the surgery will be performed in conjunction with a plastic surgeon, so that there is immediate reconstruction. If possible, it makes for a little less trauma. Radiation may not make this possible due to the skin shrinkage/burning.If there are lymph nodes involved, their removal can result in a bit of discomfort- there are numerous exercises that can be used to treat this. Also, do investigate the BRCA2 genetic testing. If your wife is suseptable to cancer, it may be necessary to do another masectomy down the road. This sounds awful, but perhaps better to get the whole thing done at once than dragging it along. Also, try to get her to take advantage of the support groups and activities that are offered for breast cancer survivors. There is a lot of info out there, and the comraderie is helpful to the healing.
    Our thoughts are with you.
  17. So sorry to hear the diagnosis, Jay. My sister just beat breast cancer: it's a tough fight, but it *can* be won. Update this thread from time to time and let us know how it's going. Let her know that lots of scruffy-lookin' bass-playing reprobates worldwide are cheering her on.

    Go. Fight. Win!
  18. Ed Goode

    Ed Goode Jersey to Georgia Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2004
    Acworth, GA
    Endorsing Artist: FBB Bass Works
    It's been 5 years since my wife was diagnosed and treated (lumpectomy, chemo, radiation) .... it's a difficult experience for both of you, you'll need to be strong for her (easier said than done). Her outcome has been successful, but not without major stress for a wide variety of reasons.

    Don't hesitate to PM me if you need someone to chat with ....
  19. EBodious


    Aug 2, 2006
    good luck with your experience thru this trial. a very dear friend of mine went thru breast cancer (very aggressive kind, chemo, radiation, double mastectomy, reconstruction, the whole deal). she has been cancer free for about a year. it was real tough for her, but she grew and learned and survived a lot of difficulties. things are much better these days in regards to cancer.

    as was said here, ask lots of questions and get lots of opinions. there are many ways to treat cancer.

    and, while you probly have been told about this, it hasn't been mentioned here, so i will. there is a website: caringbridge.org, for folks going thru major medical issues. it is great for support and venting.

    again, good luck. your wife will be going thru a lot. but so will you. stay strong for her!
  20. Sounds like you caught it in time before, if it was cancerous, it could be removed and free from the cancer spreading. I'm praying for you and your wife as well.

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