Halloween will have an entirely new meaning for me this year. That is the date I have scheduled for my surgery.
I had the opportunity to meet with my surgeon yesterday. Her name is Meghan Forster and she.is.awesome. Friendly, thorough, informative, patient, and I felt like I was partnering with her from the start.
As one can imagine it was a lot of information…I am going to do my best to summarize here as I am still digesting…
The area affected is about 4cm wide (1.57″). The area is between 12:30 and 1:30 on my left side. Most of the cancer is stage ZERO (yay me!) which means it’s contained in the ducts. There is one small portion that is minimal invasive which means a very tiny portion has broken through into the mammary gland. Normally this can all be taken care of through a lumpectomy and some follow up radiation. That is the plan for me. However, there might be a hitch in the giddyup.
My mom died of pancreatic cancer and further back on my mother’s side there is cerivical or uterine cancer. All of these are related cancers of the endocrine system which may mean that I carry the BRCA gene. I will meet with genetic counselors on 10/16 and they will most likely test me for this. If I am a carrier that means my potential for recurrence is upped and we may move to a double mastectomy if that is the case. That was a lot to take in. I wasn’t prepared for that information at all. That it is a possibility is still sinking in. For now, I’m just going to focus on the positives, which is that we caught it early, it is mostly contained and I am getting it out.
We also learned that my cancer is not estrogen receptive. Pretty much meaning it’s not fueled by estrogen — but with that it tends to be a faster growing type so I’m thankful again we found this so early.
In addition to the lumpectomy they’ll be doing a sentinal node biopsy. Basically removing the connected 1-3 lymph nodes to make sure there’s no need for chemo.
So, for now, surgery is scheduled for Halloween. I love my surgeon and her staff is awesome. I’m feeling pretty good overall and ready to move forward. Just happy to have some information and a plan for now.