Monday, July 28, 2008

Every Day is a Winding Road

July 28
We met with the geneticist on Friday and reviewed my family's medical history. I was prepared for a very short conversation as I thought we would focus on my paternal grandmother. She died of breast cancer at the age of 42 in 1943 and had just 2 sons. I know nothing about her sisters or her nieces.

I was asked about my mother’s family, of which there were 12 children and their children. What a mental challenge that was! Not a bad challenge, but a good mind exercise. That took up about 75% of the conversation :-). I went through each uncle and aunt and estimated their ages or age of death and their children’s ages, and any medical history I could remember. It looked like most of my mother’s family has the heart issue.

My father did not have sisters so we do not know if his line had breast cancer. I have been spending every possible moment researching the Riddle/Fletcher family line, trying to find cousins who might know of their family’s medical history. If other relatives have had breast cancer, but no one has had the BCRA gene testing, it might be something we all should look at.

I have decided to have the surgery on August 20th. I have vacillated between having it sooner just to get the cancer out. My daughter asked me what I would do if the BCRA gene came back as positive. I can’t answer that right now. And trust me, this has been swirling around my head constantly.

The research shows that I should have a bilateral mastectomy. But would I really have one? I prefer to have just the lumpectomy and may just do that if the test comes back positive. Well, really, I would rather not have any of this! I’ve been on the message forums at and to see what others have done. The message from most is – do what you want to do. . . . Be in charge of your body. I can only listen to advice, medical statistics and read what others would have done differently to come up with my decision. And it is a hard decision!

Pray for guidance and wisdom to make the best decision. As Vic says, I'm not the surgery kind of person, so they only get to do it once.

One week for Vic’s surgery! He continues to have episodes of low blood pressure and becomes dizzy. Thankfully, he has been listening to his body and waiting until these episodes to pass before getting active, i.e., driving the car. Otherwise, he says he feels fine.

No comments:

Post a Comment