Joanne’s cancer journey began in June 2017. While performing a routine self-examination, she found a lump which she quickly brought to her doctor’s attention. After a mammogram, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. Additional tests confirmed it was typed as “triple negative”, a more difficult-to-treat form. Her oncologist, surgeon, and care team were hopeful that a lumpectomy and chemotherapy would cure the cancer. Her surgical procedure went well, and she received 3 months of chemo and 7 weeks of daily radiation. She was a champion throughout the treatment, and only had minimal side effects. Her chemo regimen completed just in time for Christmas that year. Joanne returned to life as usual, enjoying time with her family (especially her grandchildren) and friends.
In August 2019, Joanne suddenly had lower back pain consistent with a kidney stone, and rushed to the ER. After numerous tests and scans, she discovered that her breast cancer had returned on both her liver and kidney. Bravely, she worked with her oncologist and care team, alongside a second opinion from specialists at Mayo clinic, to develop a plan to fight the metastasized cancer. Her plan leveraged aggressive chemotherapy and a newly approved form of immunotherapy. Unfortunately, the plan was deemed ineffective in the liver-based cancer cells, forcing her team to change course in February 2020. The cancer since proved resilient to other types of chemotherapy and, with waning options for treatment, Joanne and her family made the decision to focus on prioritizing her quality of life. She has opted to stop treatment in favor of palliative care and a deep appreciation of the time remaining.
Joanne looks forward to spending that time with friends and family. Recognizing we are in an unprecedented pandemic, she is seeking visits through social media (Caringbridge, Facebook, etc.), phone, text, or video chat. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement. Thank you for visiting.
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