Sara Johnston

First post: Apr 10, 2021 Latest post: May 24, 2021
At the end of February, I first noticed the mass in my right breast. I made an appointment at a walk in clinic for a physical exam to be referred for a diagnosic mammogram and ultrasound. On March 4th, I had my mammogram, immediately followed by an ultrasound. I knew it wasn't good when the technician was taking SO many images. Once she was done, she told me she had to get the doctor and left the room. A few minutes later, another woman entered the room, took a look with the ultrasound machine, then asked me to sit up. She told me, " I need to send you for a biopsy". My heart sank and I burst into the emotional mess I had been choking back all day. On March 25, I had my first biopsy at RCH (originally booked for April 14, but thankfully there was a cancellation). It was that day that I knew in my heart that it was going to be bad news. The way the nurse hugged me before I left and told me about her friend who was diagnosed at my age...I just knew. They told me to expect a call from my family doctor in a week with the results. A week passed by and I was back at RCH for a second biopsy (different area and procedure). I won't get into detail, but it was a very unpleasant experience. By the end of the day, I still had not yet heard from the doctor with my results and I decided to try and enjoy the Easter long weekend. On Tuesday, April 6th I decided to phone the doctors office to see why it was taking so long. The doctor came on the line and said, "I guess you've received your biopsy results". I said, "No...that's why I'm calling you". Without hesitation, he said " it is positive for cancer'. It hit me with so much force...even though I thought I was prepared for this, one can't ever be prepared to hear those words. I phoned the breast health clinic at Jim Pattison because I had an upcoming appointment with them for April 9 and I didn't know where to go with this news. The woman was able to reschedule my appointment for the following day, April 7 and told me I would be meeting the surgeon and nurses. I met with Dr. Janzen who is the head of the department at Jim Pattison and that's when I learned more about my pathology report. She immediately sent me down to get blood work and booked a CT scan for later that afternoon. I retured the following day for a full body bone scan. She said I would need a mastectomy and that I may decide to do both breasts. She set me up with the oncology team at Surrey BC Cancer and told me that they would be overseeing my treatment path, which will be determined in the near future. I have an appointment with the plastic surgeon for April 23 to discuss my options for reconstruction. I will update my path as things unfold and progress. I'm currently trying to focus on myself and Danika and out mental health. I know that I'm going to need to be both mentally and physically strong to help me in my healing. The support and help from family and friends will also be paramount in my healing process.

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