Joyce Massa Joyce's Journey

First post: 7/13/2017 Latest post: 10/20/2017
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On June 3, 2017 I was getting ready to attend a wedding when I felt a lump on my right breast.  I went to my surgeon's office on June 7th.  When she entered the room she asked me to show her where I felt the lump, but as I went to do so, she said never mind because she could see it.  She had her nurse schedule a mammogram and ultrasound which was done on June 14th.  The radiologist stated that it was suspicious and he would contact my surgeon.  


I received a phone call and my surgeon wanted me in the office for a biopsy on the 21st of June.  A follow-up was scheduled for June 27th.   The surgeon's office called me on June 23rd and stated that they were cancelling the follow-up appointment due to the biopsy needing to be sent out for more intense studies.


On June 29, 2017 the call came in and my surgeon stated "You have breast cancer"; a million emotions ran through my mind.  My surgeon continued to talk, but all I remember were those four words.  I did ask for the name of the cancer and was told Metaplastic Carcinoma with squamous features.  She said they would call Jodi at the cancer center, she is a Patient Navigator; she said Jodi would set up a family meeting with a team of doctors.  We would find out what our next steps would be at that time.  Of course, it seemed like it took a lifetime due to the long 4th of July weekend.


I received a phone call on the 3rd of July and the meeting was set for the 6th with my family, my surgeon, and the two cancer doctors along with the Patient Navigator and an Oncology Social Worker.  


On the 5th of July I called my family physician to be sure he was aware of the situation.


On July 6th at the meeting with the team of 5 and my family (my team of 8), we had our meeting to learn more.  Each doctor spoke and shared their opinions about next steps as well as results.  We were allowed to ask any questions that we had.  


The following day, the surgeon's nurse called to schedule a pre-op appointment with my physician.  


On the 7th of June I received the call confirming that I was scheduled for a bilateral mastectomy on June 13th at 9:30 am, a procedure which will take approximately 4 hours unless cancer is detected in my lymph nodes ~ which will go to pathology immediately.  If cancer is detected in the lymph nodes then the surgery time will be extended.



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