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I always had yearly mammograms and in September 0f 2008, I had a mammogram that recommended further evaluation. I had not felt anything suspicious in my breast prior to this. Here is an example of why a yearly mammogram is important.
For further evaluation I had a Stereotactic Needle Biopsy done the first part of October 2008. I remember asking the physician that performed the biopsy how he felt that results would be. He felt that it was not cancer, but we would have to wait for the pathology report. I remember the events of that day that Dr. Nelson called me to tell me that the biopsy I had showed cancer. The minute Dr. Nelson identified herself, I knew it was bad news. I happened to be at the public library in Leonardville talking to the librarian. I remember Dr. Nelson telling me that I had DCIS, Ductal Carcinoma In-Situ. She told me that if I had to have cancer, this was the best kind to have. When I finished the call, I told the librarian that I had breast cancer. That was probably more information than she needed that day.
In October 2008, I had a needle directed biopsy done by Dr. Saville. He removed the cancer, but Dr. Saville said that I needed to see an Oncology MD and an Oncologist in Radiology for further treatment. I chose the Tammy Walker Cancer Center in Salina for treatment based on family recommendation and the fact that I could follow up with the Oncologist in Clay Center. I was started on Tamoxifen that I am still taking because I am required to take it for five years.
My first radiation treatment was in December. We had snow that winter, and I drove in a blizzard one day to Salina. I was so grateful that the social worker at the Tammy Walker Cancer Center arranged for me to stay at the Morrison house in Salina the rest of the week so that I would not have to drive in the snow. I completed my radiation on February 11, 2009.
I still follow-up with my Oncologist and with Dr. Saville. I still have the yearly mammogram. Looking back I had an easy journey with lots of excellent medical, family, friends & co-workers support. I appreciate the Radiology Department at Clay County Medical Center, and the excellent work done that detected by breast cancer.
~ Joan Steenbock, RN, Retired from CCMC