I love how this segment turned out – it is not just my breast cancer story, but also a story of how music can heal. Thanks to Andrea Roane, of 9News, for letting me share my story and for all that she does in the DC community to raise awareness about breast cancer.
Cara Scharf Finds Strength In Music After Breast Cancer Diagnosis: http://www.wusa9.com/health/article/233063/28/Young-Woman-Finds-Strength-In-Music-After-Breast-Cancer-Diagnosis
Reading: Groundbreaking Research on Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Gets Boost from Komen
While this article has a positive message (hooray, research specifically geared toward triple-negative breast cancer!), it always scares me when the media talks about this subset of breast cancers because of things like this: “Research suggests that triple-negative breast cancers have a higher proportion of cancer stem cells.” It’s so cold-sounding, matter-of-fact. Like if my doctor were to just come out and say, “Cara, you have triple-negative cancer, and that’s bad because those cancers carry a higher incidence of brain mets, grow more aggressively, and tend not to respond to anything other than chemotherapy. So if chemotherapy stops working, you’re SOL.”
Sigh. It angers me that, though I feel so great about everything right now, one silly article can knock me down a few pegs and again bring about these fears of recurrence and death.
Posted in breastcancer, chemotherapy, Clinical stuff, Current events, Doctors, Research
Tagged komen, negative, news, Research, TNBC, triple, Triple-Negative
Today was my first tissue expansion! It was actually kind of a “yay” moment amidst all my anxiety about starting chemo (Thursday… eek). For those of you who don’t know, during my mastectomy, the plastic surgeon implanted expanders under my chest muscles. Throughout the next couple of months, these will be gradually expanded so that my skin and muscle stretch enough to make room for the real silicone implant, which I’ll have inserted after all my chemo is finished. That’s called the exchange operation – when the temporary tissue expanders are swapped for the real implants.
Because of the revision I had to have a couple weeks ago, my surgeon had to take down the left expander to almost nothing, and I was quite lopsided. But today, she filled the left side with 120 ccs, almost 2/3 of the way to matching the right side!
Yay for being a little less lopsided and a little more womanly. Yay for being so healed from surgery that my surgeon is okay with expanding me. Yay for not even feeling the small pinprick of the saline tube needle, which was inserted into a port on the expander so the saline could be injected in. Yay for not feeling much tightness or soreness at all, at least not yet. Yay for preemptive Tylenol.
And yay for this article, which totally excites the singer in me: Cancer charity gets funding for choirs after proving the pyschosocial benefits
Posted in Clinical stuff, Doctors
Tagged arts and healthcare, chemotherapy, choir, expanders, implants, news, Research, revision surgery, singing, surgery
Sometimes I don’t feel like writing about my breast cancer. Today is one of those days, so I’m just going to share two articles I read recently. Sure, they’re from Yahoo, but I think they’re still legit.
Yoga helps breast cancer patients
Genetic test shows promise in guiding breast cancer care
Try getting into that pose after a double mastectomy.