Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Continuing the Fight

Grandma is doing well and recovering quickly from her surgery. She is still sore from where the lymph nodes were taken out, but it is common for that to last for some time, since it is such a tender area. On March 1, 2011 she met with her oncologist Dr. Lee to go over her treatment plan. The pathology reports that came back stated that the tumor was 4cm in size, but they removed 8cm in total during surgery. Due to the size of the tumor, they determined that her cancer is Stage 3. Dr. Lee recommended that she undergo chemotherapy, which will begin in about a month. She will have a total of four chemotherapy sessions, once every three weeks, until all four sessions are complete. The drug that they will be using is Taxotere/Cytoxan. The side effects of the treatment are hair loss and fatigue; she should not get sick from this type of chemotherapy. She is getting more and more energy everyday and loves reading your comments on her blog. Please continue to keep her in your thoughts, because it is clearly working. Love you Grandma!


Thursday, February 3, 2011

Great News

Grandma just came out of surgery and she is doing well. They were able to fully remove the tumor and some of the surrounding tissue. While in surgery they also checked two lymph nodes and the results came back negative, meaning that the cancer has not spread to anywhere else in the body. She is currently in the recovery room and should be able to go home by 5pm today!


Monday, January 31, 2011

Hoping for the Best

On Thursday, February 3, 2011 grandma will be undergoing her lumpectomy operation. This is is an outpatient procedure, so she will be able to go home and rest later in the day. She received many prayer cards at church yesterday and seems to be in good spirits, aside from the obvious fear and nerves when going into any operation. Please send your thoughts and prayers her way. I will be at the hospital with her and the family on Thursday, so I will update the blog with the most up to date information from my phone (the joys of technology).

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Decisions, Decisions

On January 14, 2011 grandma had her appointment with the surgeon. To her surprise, the surgeon let her know that the tumor in her breast has been present for at least a year. The tumor is located in her breast tissue, which is a difficult area to see via mammogram. The surgeon gave her the option to do a lumpectomy or a mastectomy, both yielding the same result. If she chooses to do a lumpectomy, it will be an outpatient procedure and she will get to come home the same day. Because of the size of her tumor, the surgeon believes that she will need to undergo chemotherapy, but this is not definitive. Her next appointment is on January 17, 2011 with the radiologist, and after this she will be making her decision on what surgery to undergo. Stay strong and positive! She loves reading your comments, so please continue to send your kind words.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

More Information, Increased Hope

     Hi all, sorry for the delay, but I hope this post brings some light to your day. On January 10, 2011 she met with her Oncologist Dr. Lee (such an original name for a doctor these days lol). After reviewing her chest MRI, he was able to determine that the tumor in her breast is 3.7 centimeters, or about 1.5 inches. There are four stages of cancer and do the size of her tumor is was determined that her breast cancer is in Stage 2A. This is because any tumor larger than two centimeters is beyond Stage 1. Some other news that came from the MRI is that there is no cancer detected anywhere else in the breast and there is no cancer present in the other breast. WOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOO!!! Sorry about writing in all caps, I just needed a way to express my excitement. Some other good news is that via the MRI and also a physical exam, it does not look like the lymph nodes are enlarged, meaning the cancer has not affected them. This is not definite though, until the sentinel node is examined during surgery. The sentinel node is hypothetically the first node that is reached by metastasizing (growing/moving) cancer cells from a primary tumor. Lastly, her estrogen tests came back positive, so she will have to take hormone therapy for the next five years in order to help stop the recurrence of any cancer.
     Her next appointment is on January 13, 2011 and at this appointment she will be meeting with a surgeon to receive his recommendation on what type of surgery she will benefit most from and which will be the most successful. I hope this post have given you as much optimism as it has done for me. Please continue to keep grandma in your thoughts and prayers. She seems to be in good spirits about the process, so the more positive comments you send her way the better!


Friday, January 7, 2011

And the Battle Begins....

     2011 looked as if it was going to be a year full of health and prosperity. Unfortunately, grandma (Margaret) had to go in for a biopsy of a lump that she detected on herself about a month ago. She went in for the biopsy on January 3, 2011. It was a quick and somewhat painless procedure for her. They started with an ultrasound to find the placement of the mass. Once the mass was detected, they numbed her and then went in to obtain a sample of the mass. The only thing that she focused on during the procedure was the beautiful pair of diamond earrings that nurse was wearing. The procedure went well and they sent her on with her day.
     On January 4, 2011 she received a call that no person ever wants to receive. It was a call from the hospital letting her know that the results of her biopsy came back positive for Breast Cancer. As you all can imagine this was a devastating time for her, but the hospital was very quick in wanting to start meetings to figure what would be her best treatment options. On January 6, 2011 she had her first meeting with a registered nurse who let her know that she has invasive ductal carcinoma. This type of breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed breast cancer among all cases. The type of cancer that she has began in the milk duct of the breast, thus the ductal. The invasive part means that the mass has broke out of the duct and into the surrounding breast tissue. She will be undergoing some more testing to figure out if the mass is thriving off of estrogen and progesterone, which will help guide the route of treatment taken. She is also going to be having a chest MRI done to get a better idea of the size and location of the mass. After these are completed, she will be meeting with an oncologist to get a better idea of the exact treatment route.
     I know that Margaret is usually the communicator to the rest of her family, but in this time I wanted to give her the opportunity to relax and focus on getting healthy. I will continue to post with the most up to date information that I receive so we can all stay informed on her journey through this tough time. This can be used as her communication to everyone, so check back periodically and leave a reply to the posts with your well wishing because she will be looking at this as well. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

Here is a link that may give you more information about the type of cancer that she was diagnosed with