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Another breast CA patient

Hi all you brave CA survivors! Hope to be joining the survivors club. Just finished 11mos of Rx for stage 3(probably B) breast CA. ER receptor "focally positive" ( meaning somewhere between 1 & 10%) and HER 2+. for me they did chemo first, then mastectomy ( I elected a bilateral, hoping for a one and done deal) and then 6wks of radiaiton, with every 3 wkHerceptin Rx throughout. With my surgery the initial finding was NEGATIVE sentinel nodes, then 2 days later surgeon called and said the one of the two was positive and invited me back to surgery for a more radical lymph node dissection...even tho at time of surgery with an exploration thought all looked well. i did further investigation, as not at all excited to return to the OR, and found the whole thing to be questionable. A Z11 study done in Oct 2011, indicates the radical lymph dissection perhaps not necessary ( see study results) based on findings of initial CT. Wel in talking with local docs as well as consulting the CTCA ( Cancer treatment center of america) I made the decison not to return to surgery. As five lymph nodes " in the tail of the breast" were removed with the initial surgery and per initial scan they perhaps ( HOPEFULLY ) were the ones ID as having mets, thus the bad ones were out(????)..so no need to go back in and have more removed blindly without known disease and put myself at a greater risk for the complications of lymphedema. The CTCA btw WONDERFUL and hopeful, as local docs initally thought me ready for the grave in 14 mos as thought perhaps I had mets to lung and liver as CT scans not normal. Further investigation by the CTCA agree scans not the norm but what they were seeing was NOT a cancer. This verified with a negative liver biopsy, which btw is extremely painful post procedure. Anyway now nearly a year later ( dx 12/13/11) so far so good as they say. My next step the Five year plan of the aromatase inhibitor...Femara...nervous about it as lots of nasty sounding side effects and I have just recently returned to work and really dont want muscle aches and joint pain! Thoughts from those on the drug?? Also still have my power port, which Im fine with keeping..just wondering if it really needs to be flushed every 6 wks...as the Rx facility more than an hrs drive and prefer not to have to go there unless really necessary. First f/u scan to be in 3 mos, thinking I could just wait til then...yes??, no??? hoping for a much nicer carefree Christmas this year, as oppose to last, and hope all you readers have a WONDERFUL Christmas as well...HAPPY HOLIDAYS :)

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