Angela Dereix Angela Dereix

First post: Mar 12, 2020 Latest post: Aug 20, 2020
Dear Friends,

In mid-December, 2019, I was diagnosed with breast cancer, specifically, Ductal Carcinoma In-Sutu (DCIS), Stage 0, in my left breast.  This cancer is described as a non-invasive condition in which abnormal cells are found in the lining of a breast duct.  The abnormal cells have not spread outside the duct to other tissues in the breast.  This was discovered following my regularly scheduled annual 3D diagnostic mammogram the preceding November.   No symptoms, no lumps, no pain.  Thankfully, I caught it early!  

Unfortunately, now I have to do something about it as it does not go away on its own.  In fact, if left untreated, it only gets worse and could potentially spread to the lymph nodes, etc.  Standard treatment for this type of cancer is to have a lumpectomy followed by 5 weeks of radiation therapy, and 5 years of hormone therapy.  DCIS has a high recurrence rate.  Additionally, the follow-on therapies each come with short and long term side effects.  Given my "young" age of 49 at diagnosis, and family history of breast cancer, I don't want the burden of worry for the rest of my life.  I have chosen a more radical route and will have a bilateral mastectomy on Mar 12, 2020 at Naval Medical Center Portsmouth (NMCP).  While the recovery process is  more intensive upfront, this approach will give me the greatest peace of mind long term.  My prognosis is a full recovery should there not be any complications.  We are banking on the best case scenario.  

Your prayers and support are most appreciated!  If you are wishing to help in other ways, then providing a meal or two and/or a ride to/from a needed errand as your time permits would be greatly appreciated.  If you are looking to exercise, I would love company on a walk together.  My goal is to walk at least 30 minutes daily as I am able.  I expect the need for all mentioned will be greatest the first 6 weeks following surgery.  After that, I hope to be driving and having some independence back!  You can either click on the "ways to help" link on this site or go directly to this link.

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