When Michelle Pierson adopted a cat at an animal shelter, she was looking for a companion for her other pets. What she didn't expect was that her rescue cat, Mia, would soon rescue her by alerting her that she had breast cancer.
Major advances in diagnostics, surgeries and medical treatments made in breast cancer care are reshaping how doctors and patients approach the myriad challenges.
It was a Saturday evening when Bev Gillaspie found the cancer growing in her breast. Just five months before, the Eugene resident received a mammogram with clear results, but the tumor was already so large she could see its lumpy protrusion beneath her skin when standing in front of a mirror.
Kelly Barton is a planner and a problem-solver by nature. But what she didn't plan for was a breast cancer diagnosis in January. Once the initial shock of her diagnosis eased, Kelly did what she does best—she focused on learning as much as she could about her cancer and choosing the best treatment for herself.
Stacia Pugh will never forget the day she was diagnosed with breast cancer. "It was two weeks after my 39th birthday, and I was just not expecting that. It was eye-opening and shocking," she says. The single mother of two from Corvallis was filled with worry, for herself and her kids, but she knew she had to deal with it head-on. "Once I found out I had cancer, my goal was 'How are we going to cure this? How am I going to beat this?'"
When Brenda Mills of Springfield was diagnosed with stage 2 triple negative breast cancer in June of 2016, she knew she was in for the fight of her life, physically and mentally. What she didn't expect was that cancer would also cost a financial toll. When she needed support, the Oregon Cancer Foundation was there to help.
Retired teacher Debbie Roberts-Sorg is a crafter. She spends her time scrapbooking, sewing and, most recently, painting and card making. She appreciates these creative outlets even more since being diagnosed with breast cancer in January 2016. The tumor, classified as invasive ductile carcinoma, was detected during a routine mammogram.
Shannon Taggart learned two important things after she was diagnosed with breast cancer: Having support was empowering, and having access to information put her in control of her diagnosis.
A breast cancer patient will typically see many specialists, from diagnosis through treatment and recovery. To help ensure patients get the most efficient and strategic care possible, a multidisciplinary team of specialists, including oncologists from Willamette Valley Cancer Institute, meet twice a month at what's known as tumor board. "There are many different types of breast cancers and, therefore, the most appropriate and effective treatment is going to vary, based on what type of [...]
No one wants to face the prospect of a cancer diagnosis, especially when recovery means a long treatment regimen that may include surgery, chemotherapy and/or radiation. All of these treatments, while they can be life-saving, come with side effects that are less than desirable. The good news is that developing and maintaining some healthy habits can help you reduce the impact of these effects on your body and mind, and most importantly, help you [...]