On my first appointment with Dr. Victor after my mastectomy, he checked me thoroughly, said I was doing well, then reported the lab’s analyzation of my breast tissue and of the nine lymph nodes he had removed. I was a bit disappointed to learn that the cancer had metastasized not only to the one lymph node which was discovered by the ultrasound, but to one other. Lots of good news, though. The margins were wide; my prognosis was good.
“Dr. Victor, do you have any influence as to the oncologist I will see?”
“Yes,” he told me.
“I want someone who is ‘good,’ and who is friendly.”
He hesitated saying all the doctors in the oncology department were excellent, but I pressed a little, and finally he recommended Dr. Chan.
My husband, Rebecca, and Holly were with me at the first meeting with Dr. Chan. So kind, upbeat, and patient; answering all our questions. I suspect he spent an hour with us, going over my charts, then at the end showing me this one. May be a little difficult for you to read. The chart shows that by using all three approaches; mastectomy, chemotherapy, and hormone therapy, as compared with other combinations, or exclusions, a small rise in my life expectancy is obtained. I judge the rigors of chemotherapy worth the extension of my life.
(I’ve read widely. Friends have emailed me with information. Some of them advise me not to have chemotherapy or traditional treatments at all. Others support traditional medicine. I’ve listened, and will continue to do so. I’m in full agreement that a healthy body is greatly desirable, and it only makes sense that a healthy well-nourished person will be more successful in fighting a disease, so I have made the decision to eat in even healthier ways than I have in the past–in particular curtailing my intake of sugar. I will continue exercising–no doubt ramping it up a bit.)
The choice of treatment was mine, and I made it quickly. After doing so, Dr. Chan, my family, and my friend agreed that I had made the right choice.
I begin chemo tomorrow, January 26, 2016.