I have just registered with Register4 after seeing Sarah Murdoch speaking on TV this morning about the Register4 programme. I have had secondary Breast Cancer and now have Bone Metastasis. I was called back to Breast Screen, Tamworth, NSW in 2008 and after another mammogram and biopsy I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. I underwent a sentinel node biopsy and lumpectomy and was told by my Surgeon that there were no lymph glands affected, that the lump was low grade and slow growing. Because of this assessment I felt I was lucky to breeze through the operation and radiation and did not need chemotherapy or herceptin.
In September 2009 I began to have shoulder pain and I when I saw the Surgeon for a regular check up I mentioned it. He said, ''Breast Cancer loves Bones'', and sent me for a bone scan. After some delay I was told there appeared to be a trauma to my 5th rib so I was given paperwork to have a CT scan. When I was called back to my GP he told me the bad news that I had a tumor on my spine and that I had to be in Newcastle the following morning for an appointment to see an Oncologist. From there I was transferred by ambulance to the John Hunter Hospital for an MRI. Half way through the MRI the machine was stopped and the Neuro Surgeon on duty at the time told me if he did not operate as soon as possible I was going to lose the use of my legs. I was admitted to the John Hunter hospital that night put on to steroids to shrink the tumor and operated on not long after in a 5 1/2 hour operation and I now have 2 rods and 8 screws in my spine.
I am thankful to that wonderful Surgeon as 4 years later I am still here. I have been treated in Tamworth Oncology for that 4 years with an intravenous injection of Zometa which has just been changed to Xgeva because the Zometa was having an effect on my kidneys, I also take Arimidex for the Breast Cancer treatment. I have yearly mammograms and ultra sounds, 6 monthly bone and CT scans and with the help of the wonderful team of Oncology nurses and my Oncologist I have managed to continue in good health. I often feel that there is not enough said about being made aware of how Breast Cancer can spread to the bones, I was never told until it happened and I think it is a vital part of the Breast Cancer awareness story.
With the help of Register4 I hope my story raises cancer awareness and inspires more people to join up.