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My mother had breast cancer and survived.

Posts: 3
Joined: May 2003

MY mother was diagnosed with breast cancer a couple of years ago. Had to have double mastectomies, and chemotherapy. How do I handle the fear of me getting the same thing.

Posts: 7
Joined: Apr 2003

My mother recently died of breast cancer, and her mother had bc as well but, God bless her, she is still alive at 87! I went to see a genetic counselor because I wanted to have a prophylactic mastectomy (removing healthy breast tissue). We ended up having a blood test to see if my mother carried one of the gene mutations- she did. BRCA2. It's a 50/50 chance of passing it to your children. I don't have it. I also had a ductal lavage just to be sure. I highly recommend at least talking with a genetic counselor and hopefully they can steer you in the right direction. Good luck and e-mail me if you need anyone to talk to - it's not easy to see your mom go thru such a horrifying experience- cecilia12301@yahoo.com

Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2004

I too come from a family in which breast cancer is rather prevalent - my mom and her mom both had it. Grandma had a masectomy and was fine - mom had chemo and masectomy and is still going strong to this day, 7 years later. We had thought about the genetic testing route for me, per my OB-GYN's suggestion, but the implications that come along with it are frightening - being denied jobs, health insurance, etc. all because I happen to carry a gene that may or may not give me breast cancer. How did you deal with that uncertainty? Have you found any of these implications interupting your life? Please advise, as I've thought about the genetic testing...thank you.

Posts: 1
Joined: Mar 2004

"Female Cancers" have killed all the Women in my maternal side of the family for 4 Generation's.
My mother preached to my sister and I from the time we were old enough to listen that we would one day fight the cancer as well.
My Sister and I believed her but the problem was the Drs. didn't believe us! Generally considering us to be Hypochondriac's.
Despite our battles my sister died last year of Ovarian cancer, her Dr. at the time did not relay a radiologists concerns on a suspicious test for 6 mos. by the time they looked into it it was too late, a 4 year Battle for her.
But technology gave her 3 yrs. more than our mother!
Jan. 2002 I had a questionable Mammogram and despite my concern I was assured a check up in 6 mos. would be safe. By then it was invasive, now the new radiologists refuses to do a mammogram more than twice a year, at the Big Cancer and Reasearch Center in San Antonio.
But with the BRAC1 proof some Drs. will sit up and take notice and be more cautious.
I had an early breast cancer removed from the same breast same spot in 1986 and the Uterus removed in 1972 for Atypical Hyperplasia, May of 2003 I had the Ovaries removed as a precaution and told I no longer need to see a GYN Dr?
Am a Guienea Pig for the newer Bracytherapy Radiation, High dose for 5 days.
Another Dr. now tells me that max'd out the lifetime limit of Rads the lungs can tolerate and can not have any more CT Scan's that include the lungs.
The scaring in the breast makes it extremely difficult to see or catch a reocurance on A Mammogram now.
Love getting the info. after the fact!
Had 6 mos. of Chemo, Cytoxin, Metholtrexate and Floura-5.
Non Cancer Radiologists always think the scaring they see is Cancer, had a big scare about lots of spots on the lungs that disappeared on the next CT scan 2 mos. later, now I can't take anymore Chest CT's?
Next month they go checking the spots the see on my Liver.
A Roller Coaster Ride that never ends!
Research Group out of the University of Washington( Mary Claire King) is studying the family but will be another 18 mos. or so til I hear anything on that.
Seems so little to do but no luck finding any more research going on that I could help with.
Have had a constant problem with Fatigue that hasn't improved with time, the Drs. tests and say there can't find anything wrong and that it must be depression but I've be on a Max dose of Elavil for 13 yrs. to help with Fibromyalgia attacks.
They added another anti-depressant on top of it that hasn't done anything.
Still feel there's something going on and they just haven't found it but they just think its fears?
What a journey this is turning out to be!
Anyone else out there having an ongoing problem with Fatigue?
My initial Genectic test was $2700 out of Myraid Labs. in Salt Lake City,once they found the exact BRAC 1 defect it was $475 for my sister and our first cousin to be testedfor just the exact same defect, they both had it.
Once you have cancer you are virtually uninsurable so might as well help the research in any way possible.
I was amazed when Myraid told us most people that have the defect refuse further testing, how in the world can they ever find a cure or accurate predictor if we don't band together!
If I can help anyone out there will be glad to do whatever I can!

Marg Murphy

Posts: 2
Joined: Mar 2004

My mother was recently diagnosed with breast cancer, and it has killed/affected many other family members on my maternal side also. And I am very scared also of me getting the same thing. I am looking for the same information on how to handle my fears. And i am 16 years old with 3 younger sisters who possibly could get it also. it is just a very scary thought.

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