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In June of 2008 I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I had one area that was cancerous, nothing in my lymph nodes. A simple lumpectomy took away the cancer area in August of 2008. I had radiation treatments for 5 weeks and am now waiting to have another test to see if I am still free of cancer in my breasts. Getting my examination each year was the best thing I could do and I urge all women to have them. Betty Ann Robbins

Betty Ann Robbins
Palm Bay,, FL

I'm a Survivor

In May I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I had one lumph that was cancerous, nothing in lymph nodes. A simple lumpectomy took away my cancer. I am to begin perhaps a few radiation treatments or perhaps only hormonal therapy. I am very fortunate that my cancer was not serious and could be taken care of very quickly. God was with me. I give Him thanks for early detection and a quick response by Bertrad Breast Center and Dr. Amber Allen.

Patricia Sims+
Greensboro, NC

I will not be defined by my diagnosis.

At my six month follow up after having my second child, my OB/GYN suggested that I get a baseline mammogram since I had just turned 35. I was still nursing my baby and asked if I had to quit nursing. She told me that she did not feel anything unusual in my breast exam and to go whenever I quit nursing. 5 months later I went in for my baseline mammogram when they found "a worrisome mass". That was May 2008 when I was diagnosed with Stage 2-A invasive intraductal carcinoma. After my lumpectomy in June I went through 8 rounds of chemo then 6 weeks of radiation.

On June 5th 2009, I celebrated being cancer free for one year. I have learned so many things during this last year. I learned how much I am loved. I learned just how strong I am (emotionally, physically, and spiritually). I also learned that I am not defined by my diagnosis. I choose to be happy regardless of my circumstances.

As I went through treatment I felt like everyone looked at me as a cancer patient and now a breast cancer survivor, but there is so much more to me that that. I am a mother. I am a wife. I am a friend. I am a child of God. I am a professional. I am a daughter. I am so much more than just my diagnosis.

If you were diagnosed with breast cancer remember that you are more than your diagnosis too.

Gilbert, AZ

I am a survivor

In 2002 after being diagnosed with a small breast cancer I opted for mastectomy and reconstruction because of family history. I was 54 at the time. After 4 years a new cancer was found unrelated to the first. This time it was bad. I had another mastectomy, chemo radiaion and reconstruction. I lost all of my long blond hair. But my friends reminded me that hair does not define who you are. It is what is in your heart. I am stage 4 chronic disease but I am currently in remission. NEVER give up hope always keep a postive attitude and live life to its fullest. I now volunteer at Gilda's Club and give support to others who are on the same journey. I may have cancer BUT it does not have me. Remember to have your mammograms. When in doubt ask questions. YOU are your best advocate.

Marci Iglow
Palm Desert, CA

A survivor

The first year I was on the program for free manmagrams was the year that they found some thing which turned out to be cancer. I continue to use the program and am very Thankful for it. It has been seven years for me now and hoping this month when I go in; it will be another good year. So glad there is some thing out there for women that don't have insurance that will cover these checkups ones a year at least. Thank you for all you do and hope it continues to be a program that will be around forever.

New Prague, MN

We need a Cure

I was disagnosed with IDC on February 29, 2008, I was 46 years old. I had a mastectomy in March 2008 then six chemotherapy treatments. A shout out to Duke University Medical Center in Raleigh/Durham NC for their wonderful care. This October I am walking in the Susan G. Komen for a Cure 3-Day 60 mile walk in Philadelphia. We need a cure in time for our children and their children!

Lynn Lively
Richlands, NC

English survivor who clicks for you.

I am a very lucky woman, I live in England so get free mamograms here. In 2007 I went for my 4 yearly mamogram in the local Tesco car park, we have mobile units here. As this is a normal procedure for me I thought no more of this until I received my results a few weeks later recalling me as the mamogram was inconclusive. Along I went with my sister & daughter for support. I still thought nothing of this I had no lumps, after several more mamograms they discovered that I had suspicious deposits in my milk glands, they did a core biopsy there and then and I was contacted the following Wednesday and told it was cancer and I needed a operation to remove this area. Within 6 weeks I had had my op, and been discharged, they just removed the infected area wiich was at the back of the breast and done on day surgery. I had 2 follw up appointments with the surgon and and cancer doctor and then 15 sessions of radiotherapy as a precautionary measure. They cannot tell if this type of cancer which in my case was non invasive would have ever turned into full blown breast cancer and I have agreed to take part in a more indepth study by supplying blood and access to my medical records to help future ladies.

I now go for yearly mamograms for 5 years and keep my fingers crossed that I stay ALL CLEAR! I click for you every day as you have to pay for your mamograms. As I said I am one very lucky lady and want to help others so as long as this site exists & I am able, I shall click every day.

Jenny Damery
Bedfordshire, United Kingdom

Support all the way!

September of 2008, my favorite person in the whole world was diagnosed with breast cancer. This person was my Nana. She is the best grandmother anyone would want. I can remeber the day she found out, coming downstairs and saying, "Mushka, I love you more than you will ever know". I thought she was saying she was gonna die. I cried. Then she went for chemo for a year. She fought hard. And with my dad there helping her with his sarcasm towards her kept her spirits up. She never thaught negative about having cancer, or at least not aroubd me and my 3-year-old sister (who just turned 4 in May). My sister and I each went once to one of her chemo treatments. She had a mastectomy done in September. My dad's new joke was that now she was lop-sided. I think the joking arround and having support is what kept her alive and survive the cancer.

Port Jervis, NY

Get help sooner rather than later ....

At 15 I discovered a lump in my right breast, I was quickly admitted to hospital to have a lumpectomy. Fortunately it was benign. That was in the 1960's - and we didn't have mammograms or breast-screening programmes where I lived at that time. I can vividly remember the embarrassment of having a lop-sided chest at school, because the surgeons who performed the operation told my mother that I was young enough to have my breast "refill itself" naturally. I am still "naturally" lop sided (but not so severely). I count myself lucky that it was caught in time.

30-odd years later one of my sister-in-laws discovered a lump in her breast and was too worried and scared to do anything about it, in case it was cancer. I was able to tell her all about my experiences as a teenager. My reassurances worked, she sought help, had a mammogram and luckily her lump turned out to be a cyst that was easily drained without any invasive surgery.

So I feel that my embarrassment as a teenager, stuffing socks and cotton wool in one side of my bra to try and balance out my chest so no one noticed (especially the boys), has served to help at least one person get help sooner, rather than later. That makes it all worth while.

Christine Thomas
Isle of Man, United Kingdom

Osteoporosis Warning

I returned from living overseas for 15 years and had my first mammogram in that time at the age of 57. Stage 2 Breast cancer. Surgery, chemo and radiation followed. That was in 1999. I have now been cancer free for 10 years.

However, I want to post a warning . The estrogen inhibitor drugs I was given caused a severe osteoporosis and I have broken my hip twice, fractured 5 ribs and broken an arm. If your Dr. doesn't tell you, be sure to take lots of calcium and consider some of the bone building medications.

But I'm lucky I had the mammogram and caught it just in time.

Whitewater, CA
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