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Questions about support for the mental aspects of breast cancer & treatement.
|Asked||Publicly Submitted Question|
|7/19/2009||Hi. I was diagnosed with IDC (grade 1, stage 1, 1.4cm) this past May at age 49. Because I am quite small breasted and because other suspicious lumps were found with an MRI, I decided on the mastectomy/no radiation route, fearing that a lumpectomy and three more biopsies would not produce an acceptable cosmetic result. SNB was negative, other lumps were benign and I learned a few weeks ago that my Oncotype score is low (9). In other words, very very positive prognosis, which leaves me quite grateful and relieved on the one hand, but on the other, I'm really struggling. Given the small size, low grade, early stage and very low Oncotype score, I'm finding it hard not to wonder what the hell all the fuss was about and if everything (loss of breast, loss of sensations, expense) was really necessary. I am not an uneducated woman and understand that cancer doesnít just go away, but I canít help feeling as if we jumped the gun a bit and threw the baby out with the bathwater. To add to my doubts, I read in a breast imaging book online that slow growing tumors can sometimes be growing 20-30 years before they are large enough to detect. So this is my question. Is it even remotely possible that I could have lived a nice, long, healthy life without the tumor ever causing me a problem?|
|Replied||JHU's Breast Center Reply|
|7/19/2009||first, congrats on a favorable prognosis. would this tumor have remained there and never harmed you? no one knows... there are certainly women who have gone undiagnosed and die of other things. it is strongly recommended to always surgical treat breast cancer as soon as it is found. For me the bigger question was the decision to do mastectomy. standard of care would have been to do biopsies (core, not open excisional) to rule out the presence of multiple tumrs being in the breast. multiple tumors results in the necessity to do mastectomy. but sounds like fear and haste thrust you into mastectomy. I'm hoping that reconstruction was part of the surgery also done. if not, then pursue it now. you are welcome to come our way. 443-287-2778. we make decisions based on the information we have at any given time. you made a decision. don't try to second guess yourself now. it will drve you nuts. move forward, hopefully knowing that you are a long term survivor of the future.|
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