Friday, November 13, 2009

Day 5 - details & plan

So, today is my 5th day of knowing I have breast cancer. I'm gonna start calling it BC, okay? It looks nicer that way.

Here are all the facts and details, as I know them so far... because it's tiring to keep saying all of this to people individually!

It's Stage 1, grade 1. The tumor is in my left breast, 8 millimeters by 7 millimeters in size, which is very small. Not even a centimeter. It is "well-differentiated," which is good - it means its shape is clear, it's not a spider-webby thing.

Treatment will most likely be:
1. An MRI of both of my breasts, to help create a more detailed map for surgery. This will be early in the morning on Nov. 18, unless I am menstruating, and then it may have to be rescheduled. (Your breasts go through changes during your menstrual cycle that may make the MRI image more difficult to interpret).
2. Lumpectomy surgery - the REMOVAL OF THE TUMOR! Along with this will be a sentinel node sampling - they'll check my lymph nodes to make sure the cancer hasn't spread there.
3. Spend a month healing from the lumpectomy (I think).
4. Assuming my lymphs are fine, I will most likely need 6 weeks of radiation therapy - 20 minutes per day, Monday through Friday. The radiation will be directed only to the very specific area of my left breast, to kill any remaining cancer cells. It's not my whole body that's getting radiation.
5. I don't know yet!

I don't yet know where I will be having surgery, or when. My mom is helping me with those phone calls. Right now, it seems likely that surgery will be at Darmouth-Hitchcock in Lebanon, NH, and the MRI and radiation would be at an affiliated cancer center in Keene.

I will update with more information when I have it.

5 comments:

  1. Hey Britta!! Sending you a daily dose of love and care and positive thoughts!!!! xoxo

    Margot

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  2. Hey Britta

    You're doing a GREAT job. It's so much to handle and digest. Way to go!

    Love
    Sue

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  3. Wow, Britta - I just read through some of your entries. Shocking still, isn't it?
    I found out that I have HPV, and although it is not cancer, I am having a biopsy done on some cervical tissue and will get results in next Tuesday. As I'm reading through what you will go through, I can feel my body feeling stuff for you...
    I'm here for you, sister - I mean it! Although our friendship has (just) started, I feel such love & light for & from you!
    We all KNOW you ARE and WILL be wonderfully healed and exuberant-as-ever.
    Love to you...
    Nabi

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  4. You are the first thing on my mind when I open my eyes in the morning. I love you. I miss you. I'm here for you. Feel my hug. xox

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  5. Thank you, Margot, Sue, Tammie!! Much love! XOXO

    Nabi, sorry to hear about the HPV and biopsy! Good luck with the results on Tuesday. You're in my thoughts.
    And thanks for your support. I've felt such love and light from/for you from the start TOO!

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