Second Email Update

March 3, 2013

Hi friends and family,

I just wanted to share a little update with you.

First the good news – The CT scan has confirmed that the tumors are shrinking. In fact, the scan said that there were no longer any abnormalities in the neck area detected!! Yayayayay! This is the best news. The tumor in the breast and in the lymph node under the arm are still there but the mass is dispersing a bit. It no longer feels like a lump, more like an area where my flesh is a bit more dense, but not really a solid mass, which they tell me is a good thing.

So, the bad news is that I had some genetic testing done and it turns out that I have a gene that makes it more likely that I will get breast and/or ovarian cancer in my lifetime. At least this helps explain why this is happening and it doesn’t seem quite as random. Unfortunately, because of the aggressiveness of this cancer and the gene mutation, the doctors are recommending a double mastectomy (the second breast would be removed for prophylactic measures) and eventually, a preventative hysterectomy. These are things I did not think I would be thinking about at the age of 36. My surgery date has been set for May 1st.

I have a fair few good days, where I feel relatively happy and positive. The good news about the tumors shrinking keeps my spirits up in general. But I also have some really tough days. This past week I had to go to the emergency room because I had a fever. And I had a very bad rash on my feet, which made it difficult to put shoes on and to go outside. The oncologist suggested postponing this past treatment. She was worried that the rash was actually a sign of nerve damage. Thankfully, the rash went away, as did the fever and I was able to go forward with the chemo on Wednesday.

I have now completed 6 rounds of chemo, so only 2 more to go!!

I hope you all are doing well. Thanks for reaching out with support and words of encouragement.

Sending love,

xoxo

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About Naomi

Writing about health/wellness and motherhood at www.everybodyhearts.com and academia and research at www.tracingmemory.com
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