Kelly Poole

First post: Nov 9, 2020 Latest post: Nov 20, 2020
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In September of 2020, after a bad mammogram in August of 2020, Kelly was diagnosed with Invasive Ductal Carcinoma (IDC).  Although the cancer was caught early, it was quickly revealed to be the most aggressive form of breast cancer.  The tumor, only 1.1 cm in size, at the time of the biopsy, was graded a 3 on a scale of 1-3, 3 being the worst.  Kelly's cancer is also what is referred to as triple negative.  It is  common for breast cancers to be fueled by estrogen, progesterone, and/or HER2, a protien.  Kelly's is not fueled by any of the three.  So not only is her cancer growing at quicker pace than the average breast cancer cells, but it will not respond to hormonal therpy medicines or medicines that target HER2 protein receptors. Kelly does not fall into the typical "at risk" population, but did receive radiation to her chest in 2002 during her battle with Stage 2B Hodgkin's Lymphoma.  Because of the previous radiation, she is six times more likely to get breast cancer than the average woman.  For the past several years, she alternated her annual mammograms with an MRI, six months later.  Because of Covid, she had not been able to have a mammogram last spring, so it had been almost a year since her last MRI.  Even though no one can officially say the radiation is the cause for the breast cancer, her doctors all say it is "suspicious".  In addition, a genetics test revealed she does not have the breast cancer gene (although it did reveal a colon cancer gene).  Therefore, given the fact if she just had a lumpectomy  the high risk would still exist for her remaining  breast tissue, and coupled with the knowledge of the triple negative diagnosis, she has elected for an aggressive approach and will have a bilateral mastectomy on November 13.  The recovery period is expected to be 4-6 weeks.  After she has fully healed, she will begin a rigorous chemotherapy regimine.  This is yet to be determined, as there is more to learn from the surgery, but we know is necessary because of the triple negative diagnosis.  Even though any signs of the cancer will have been removed with the surgery, there is still a chance those pesky cells could escape while the cancer remains in her body.  Those cells can disappear and show up years later, in another part of  the  body.  The plan is to kill these elusive, remaining cancer cells to lower the recurrence rate. 

As many of you know, this is the third cancer diagnosis between Kelly and her husband, Jim.  Kelly beat Hodgkin's in 2002, and Jim was diagnosed with Stage 4 Prostate Cancer in 2011.  Many, many people have been praying for Jim and Kelly and their twin boys, Luke and Mark, these past nine years, and Jim has continued to defy all odds.  The Pooles believe in the power of prayer!  So, please, continue to pray for this family as they take on their latest battle.  Luke and Mark were only nine months old when Kelly was diagnosed last time.  They are 19 now and in their freshman year of college- Mark at Wabash and Luke at Rose-Hulman.  Both young men have a strong faith, but times like these can certainly challenge even the strongest faith.  With God at our side, all things are possible.

When you go through deep waters, I will be with you.  When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown.  When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.  Isaiah 43:2




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