Time Off
The Re-excision

Next Steps

I had my week of fun, now back to business.

Last week I met with four different doctors to hear my options for moving forward: my surgeon, oncologist, radiology oncologist, and plastic surgeon. I was absolutely inundated with information, not only from them but from my own research, too (the "Bible" for breast care, and a handful of women who were kind enough to share their own experiences - thank you!).

I'll spare you the gory details (the science around mastectomies & reconstruction is quite fascinating if it's not in fact happening to you) and cut to the chase: I've elected to try a re-excision in an attempt to get clear margins. Basically, the doctors were really pleased with how my body responded to the lumpectomy (healed beautifully...you wouldn't even know I had surgery!) and presented this less invasive option to me last week.

So I go in again on Wednesday, when my surgeon will open up the existing site and remove another layer of cells in hope of getting a clear margin (2mm or more of cancer-free cells around the border of the specimen removed). There is a 50:50 chance that this will work; if it doesn't then I will proceed with a single-stage mastectomy next month. But the re-excision should be relatively easy - a one week recovery and no surgical drains! In either case, I still need to proceed with 6 weeks of radiation and 5 years of Tomoxifen once surgery is complete.

I'm hopeful that the re-excision will work, as I'm ready to get on with life!! I'm feeling well these days - my appetite is back in full force (although I'm definitely more mindful of what I eat, and I am the lightest I've been since College) and my hair/eyebrows/lashes are slowly coming back. I still tire easily, and my fingernails and toenails are a mess (apparently the worst of it hits them one month after chemo ends) but nothing a little polish can't hide.  

I got outside for a bit today and walked the new pedestrian bridge connecting Charlestown's Paul Revere Park  to Cambridge's North Point Park. Here are a few pics:

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Heading into Paul Revere Park

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Crossing under the Zakim Bridge into Cambridge

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Arriving at North Point Park

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Enjoying the scenery

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A happy local





Comments

Karen

You are going to do great and come out the winner! Thank you for sharing the update...and the nice pictures! Especially the one with the beautiful "happy local"! That is a great picture of you! I am always thinking of you, sending good thoughts & prayers! (((hugs)))

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