Two months ago I received the shock of my life. A few months after my 29th birthday I was diagnosed with Stage IIIC Inflammatory Breast Cancer, which I was told was an aggressive form of the disease. This being said, there is absolutely no history of the disease in my family.
I began going to the doctor in early September when I scheduled an appointment with an OBGYN because I felt a small lump in my right breast. When I was sent down to radiology, I was told I had nothing worry about and it was likely just some fluid. Two weeks later when it was not any better, I returned, saw another OBGYN and was sent back down to radiology where they confirmed I still had a mass.
Fast forward I was then sent to a surgeon, where sadly I was misdiagnosed and tried three treatments of antibiotics to rid myself of the assumed "breast infection", as my ducts were inflammed with this type of cancer. A biopsy was even performed, but unfortunately only tested for bacteria...not cancer.
PERSISTANCE is what saved my life. I continued to go to the doctor. I was not getting better, and my small lump eventually turned into my entire breast being swollen and painful to the touch. At my 10th appointment in less than 3 months, the surgeon knew something was drastically wrong. In one day I had an MRI at 7am, a tissue biopsy at 1:00pm, and at 3:00 pm she delivered me the news that I had this form of cancer that needed immediate attention.
She gave me the option to think about what I wanted to do, or I could go into surgery in the next few hours to place my port catheter and stay overnight to receive chemo the next day. Needless to say, I stayed and started right away, as waiting would give this fast spreading cancer the opportunity to take over more areas of my body.
I've started a Facebook page called The Cancer Detour to spread awareness for women of all ages, as this disease DOES NOT discriminate for age. We need to be our own health advocates when we know something is wrong with our bodies.
Be happy and be well!