Tanya's Breast Cancer Story
Our thoughts, prayers and best wishes are with Tanya Bowsher, a Kirby Medical
Group nurse practitioner who is currently battling breast cancer. Tanya's
experience reminds us all of the importance of prevention and wellness
screenings, including breast self-exams and mammograms.
Tanya describes her experience:
"My cancer was found by myself in the shower in March when I felt
a lump. I went in to work that day and was examined and had a diagnostic
mammogram and ultrasound that afternoon. My mammogram showed two suspicious
masses that were later confirmed to be invasive ductal carcinoma.
This was a huge shock in my life. I had just turned 40 in January and hadn't
even gotten a mammogram yet. I had no family history of breast cancer.
After careful consideration, I opted to have a double mastectomy in April
followed by chemo and radiation. At least that was the plan at that time.
In June, I started to have a lot of pain in my right shoulder blade and
had a PET scan. That is when the game changed. Instead of having Stage
II breast cancer, I now was diagnosed with Stage IV.
I am no longer a candidate for radiation as there is no benefit in metastatic
disease. I am now finished with chemotherapy and am recovering from those
side effects. I have started on anti-hormone therapy and will be monitored
closely by my oncologist for any progression in the disease.
Prior to my diagnosis, I only knew basics about breast cancer. I have learned
so much in the last seven months. The number one thing I did not realize
was there is no cure for Stage IV breast cancer, but hopefully with research
and trials we can change that very soon."