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Introduction

Introduction

Chapter: 1 - Introduction

Subchapter: 1 - Introduction

Each of our lives is a story. We journey along a road of experiences and emotions, passing significant milestones along the way. When suddenly, the road beneath our feet takes a sharp turn, breaking from what was once certain.

Breast cancer causes this break. Perspective ruthlessly shifts; you and your loved ones see the road differently than before.

However, we see the road has not ended–it continues on through new hills and new valleys. We know that life has done this before, curiously forcing us into foreign places and down roads that seemed impassable. Yet somehow these challenges become fertile soil where seeds of strength, love, and resilience mature and grow strong.

Remember, this is a road that has been traversed by thousands of women, women with full lives and loved ones. Women whose dreams–whose lives–were threatened by breast cancer. Women who now share stories of endurance and hope.

Beyond the Shock® is first and foremost a resource for women who have been diagnosed with breast cancer. Secondly, it is for their loved ones to gain a better understanding of the disease and to feel a stronger sense of connection. Finally, it is for doctors to reinforce their instruction and advice.

This is the first of a series of videos, divided up into chapters and sub-chapters. These videos will provide information for you to process, share and use to your own benefit. You will learn about breast cancer: it’s types and stages, how it grows, how it is diagnosed, and how it is treated. More than anything else, Beyond the Shock® is a place to gain knowledge for today and receive hope for tomorrow.

Related Questions

  • Cheryl Wornham Profile

    Can you still get breast cancer when taking tamoxifen?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 2 years 2 answers
    • Sharon Danielson Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2007

      Cheryl,
      Unfortunately, you can....maybe not the same kind but it is not out of the realm of possibility to develop a different type of breast cancer or also have a recurrance.
      Bummer! Sharon

      1 comment
    • Cheryl Wornham Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Thanks Sharon

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    Hey ladies, i've got a question? Are any of you familiar with the drug Diethylstilbestrol (DES). I heard them talking on the news today about it. I got this information from the internet. My mother was given this while pregnant with me.

    Asked by anonymous

    Stage 1 Patient
    almost 2 years 5 answers
    • View all 5 answers
    • Life is Good! Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      Here are some sites about DES. PLEASE be cautious in reading too much info and adding to the stress or worry that we already have too much of!!! ...

      more

      Here are some sites about DES. PLEASE be cautious in reading too much info and adding to the stress or worry that we already have too much of!!!

      http://www.cdc.gov/des/consumers/about/concerns_daughters.html

      http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/DES

      http://www.cdc.gov/des/partners/download/DES&BreastCancerFS.pdf

      1 comment
    • Life is Good! Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2003

      Thanks for the info about DES, Kim. My mom took it when pregnant with me. My first gyn noticed a ridge around my cervix which is a side effect. I also had complicated pregnancies most likely because of the DES exposure. In 2001, I had a partial hysterectomy due in part to prevent uterine...

      more

      Thanks for the info about DES, Kim. My mom took it when pregnant with me. My first gyn noticed a ridge around my cervix which is a side effect. I also had complicated pregnancies most likely because of the DES exposure. In 2001, I had a partial hysterectomy due in part to prevent uterine cancer, which is also a side effect. It wasn't until after my BC diagnosis in 2003, that I read that DES daughters have a higher risk of breast cancer. I have no family history and think that DES may have contributed, but doctors don't know for sure. I would be interested to hear from women were exposed to DES. Meanwhile, I am trying to live a healthy lifestyle, maintain a positive attitude, and lead a joyful life!!! Cancer does not define me, it really s&*#s,and wish NO one had to experience it, but it has enriched my life as well. I am so thankful for the amazing women on this site!

      1 comment
  • leslie adkins Profile

    What are your thoughts of people who do the gene test, it comes back positive, and they go in for surgery, reconstruction, etc? Me? I'd rather get regular testing, and avoid the pain, etc.

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    almost 2 years 5 answers
    • View all 5 answers
    • melissa perlman Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      As you can see, different feelings from everyone. Myself, came out brca 2 pos. opted for the double mastectomy with prophylactic hysterectomy. I obviously had breast cancer once, chances are way too high I'd see it again in my lifetime. Pain us relative and more easily treatable than cancer. I...

      more

      As you can see, different feelings from everyone. Myself, came out brca 2 pos. opted for the double mastectomy with prophylactic hysterectomy. I obviously had breast cancer once, chances are way too high I'd see it again in my lifetime. Pain us relative and more easily treatable than cancer. I just finished everything in December. Would do it again in a heartbeat.

      Comment
    • Stephanie S Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 3A Patient

      I think that's the wonderful thing about having a choice, not everyone would choose the same route. I'm 25 and have a lot of years to live which also means a lot of years for reoccurrence to happen and would rather go through the surgery now to hopefully stop it from ever coming back. For me it...

      more

      I think that's the wonderful thing about having a choice, not everyone would choose the same route. I'm 25 and have a lot of years to live which also means a lot of years for reoccurrence to happen and would rather go through the surgery now to hopefully stop it from ever coming back. For me it was an easy choice I made before my testing even came back positive, I knew what route I would take even before seeing the reoccurrence chance %'s. Luckily everyone is different and at least here in Canada, has the choice with how they want to handle a positive test. I have some family members who want to be tested, and some that don't, and that's 100% their choice, but at least they are aware and can get regular screening.

      1 comment
  • Jennifer Jones Profile

    I am having a left breast mastectomy on Thursday. Is there anything I need to know about what to bring to the hospital and what clothes to wear home after it? Anything else that will help me would be great.

    Asked by anonymous

    Patient
    about 2 years 7 answers
    • View all 7 answers
    • Roxann C Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 1 Patient

      I just got out of the hospital 5 weeks ago with my double mastectomy. These things helped me. You won't be able to shower for a few days until your drains come out whether you or at the hospital or at home. You may want to buy:
      1) dry shampoo for your hair
      2) baby wipes to wipe your body
      3) tops...

      more

      I just got out of the hospital 5 weeks ago with my double mastectomy. These things helped me. You won't be able to shower for a few days until your drains come out whether you or at the hospital or at home. You may want to buy:
      1) dry shampoo for your hair
      2) baby wipes to wipe your body
      3) tops with front buttons, you will not be able to lift your arm
      4) you may want to go to a mastectomy product store and purchase an Amoena Hannah camisole. Its a special post op bra that holds the drains. Google it so you can see the picture. The bra they give you in the hospital is horrible and has velocro on it. Insurance and Medicaid will pay for the bra. You may want to buy 2. One to wash and the other to wear. You will wear this bra for 3-5 weeks post op.
      5) an item that give you comfort sort of a "security blanket" but can be anything.
      6) You may also want to go to the mastectomy product store and have a custom nipple prosthesis made. It will be a nipple that looks as close as possible to your other breast.

      1 comment
    • Yashmira Devine Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 1 Patient

      Hi Jennifer,

      It looks like everyone has given you a great list to take to the hospital.
      I live in NY and I also did not know what to take for a bilateral mastectomy that I had 5 weeks ago. My doctor's office gave me a goody bag full of stuff and the hospital staff were really nice and also...

      more

      Hi Jennifer,

      It looks like everyone has given you a great list to take to the hospital.
      I live in NY and I also did not know what to take for a bilateral mastectomy that I had 5 weeks ago. My doctor's office gave me a goody bag full of stuff and the hospital staff were really nice and also gave me extra things.
      Some things that you may want to have
      A water bottle
      Life savers---- I know silly but they were great. I had that metallic taste in my mouth for days and the lifesavers helped a lot.
      a warm blanket- it does not matter how many blankets the hospital gives you, you still seem to be cold so be prepared.
      2 small- 5x7 size pillows- came in the goody bag. Very helpful when going home. Used it to protect my chest from the seatbelt.
      If the hospital staff is willing to give you ask for a box of gloves, alcohol wipes, and the containers to measure the drains. but just in case- have these at home so you're not unprepared. The hospital also gave me an extra bra- one had velcro the other did not....very nice staff. Ask for one, it doesn't hurt to ask. the worst thing they can say is no.

      Good Luck, stay positive. This is a bump in the road of our lives. We just have to get through it. Sometimes we need help from someone or a few people to pick us up but what I have learned not only from my family and friends but also from the ladies here is that they will hold your hand with knowledge, info, and support.

      Comment

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