Discussions that mention arimidex

Cancer: Breast board


Trying to decide, after having surgery for a stage 1 tumor, 1.1 cm, clear nodes--whether or not to do radiation: partial breast or whole breast--or nothing. No chemo is planned. I am already on hormone therapy--Arimidex.

My various doctors all urge radiation since it would help prevent recurrence in that breast. But radiation does not increase survival rate. I'm worried about the side effects of radiation--lung scarring, fragile ribs, who knows what else.

All my naturapath friends say no to radiation, of course. All my mainstream friends assume a yes. I seem to be trapped in the middle ground. Anybody out there who can help or who has gone through this? Would really appreciate hearing from another agonizer about this decision. (Also, has anyone had experiencw with a prone breast board? that's one in which the patient lies face down, breasts going through some cut-outs, thus reducing the amount of radiation to internal organs, etc.)

Atid
Hi there,
For what it's worth, my mom went through the same thing. Lumpectomy, followed by radiation.. she started on Arimidex but her body did not handle well so she decided the radiation was enough. She got through the sessions. They were not painful, just stressful and made her very tired. 6 years later and she has tremendous pain in her rib area.....I am not saying that to deter you, it is probably the right thing to do, to take every precaution. There is no easy answer, you just dont want to do any of it. But I just wanted to share that it is true, there are lasting side effects. My mom only agreed to it because it was the second time she had breast cancer.
We were told that the chance for reoccurence "without" radiation was 30-40%, and with it, was reduced to 10% so she decided to go ahead with it.
Good luck with your decision, I know it's a tough one....yes, she had pain in her ribs but if it has prevented anything from coming back, it's worth it. Unfortunately we'll never know that....

Caroline
[QUOTE=Atid;2817807]Trying to decide, after having surgery for a stage 1 tumor, 1.1 cm, clear nodes--whether or not to do radiation: partial breast or whole breast--or nothing. No chemo is planned. I am already on hormone therapy--Arimidex.

My various doctors all urge radiation since it would help prevent recurrence in that breast. But radiation does not increase survival rate. I'm worried about the side effects of radiation--lung scarring, fragile ribs, who knows what else.

All my naturapath friends say no to radiation, of course. All my mainstream friends assume a yes. I seem to be trapped in the middle ground. Anybody out there who can help or who has gone through this? Would really appreciate hearing from another agonizer about this decision. (Also, has anyone had experiencw with a prone breast board? that's one in which the patient lies face down, breasts going through some cut-outs, thus reducing the amount of radiation to internal organs, etc.)

Atid I had the same size cancer (twice). The second cancer returned in the same spot as the first six years later after being on Tamoxfin for five years. Following the second breast cancer I chose to undergo radiation in our state's major city some 1,000km from my country town. Eight years have past since then, I am no longer on any of the usual breast cancer preventitive drugs, I have my yearly mammograns and check breasts regularly.
To prevent the effects of burn to the skin from radiation use 100% Aloe Vera clear gel as soon after the treatment as possible. Before starting take large doses of the vitamin B group. Yes, it is a shock to the body and is a drawn out process. Having to get to the hospital daily, then waiting for your two minute treatment, I know it was worth it. Most important is have someone with you, friends are good medicene.
[QUOTE=Atid;2817807]Trying to decide, after having surgery for a stage 1 tumor, 1.1 cm, clear nodes--whether or not to do radiation: partial breast or whole breast--or nothing. No chemo is planned. I am already on hormone therapy--Arimidex.

My various doctors all urge radiation since it would help prevent recurrence in that breast. But radiation does not increase survival rate. I'm worried about the side effects of radiation--lung scarring, fragile ribs, who knows what else.

All my naturapath friends say no to radiation, of course. All my mainstream friends assume a yes. I seem to be trapped in the middle ground. Anybody out there who can help or who has gone through this? Would really appreciate hearing from another agonizer about this decision. (Also, has anyone had experiencw with a prone breast board? that's one in which the patient lies face down, breasts going through some cut-outs, thus reducing the amount of radiation to internal organs, etc.)

Atid
Who told you radiation doesn't improve your survival rate? If that were true, why would they give it to us? I have infiltrating duct cancer and was told they will do a lumpectomy next week followed by 6 weeks of radiation. The radiation is needed to kill any potential remaining cancer in the breast. It would be dangerous not to do it. Otherwise I should be getting a mastectomy instead. I have chosen the radiation and lumpectomy. Besides, the radiation also helps to avoid recurrance. I suggest you talk with the doctors about this in more detail.
[QUOTE=Atid;2817807]Trying to decide, after having surgery for a stage 1 tumor, 1.1 cm, clear nodes--whether or not to do radiation: partial breast or whole breast--or nothing. No chemo is planned. I am already on hormone therapy--Arimidex.

My various doctors all urge radiation since it would help prevent recurrence in that breast. But radiation does not increase survival rate. I'm worried about the side effects of radiation--lung scarring, fragile ribs, who knows what else.

All my naturapath friends say no to radiation, of course. All my mainstream friends assume a yes. I seem to be trapped in the middle ground. Anybody out there who can help or who has gone through this? Would really appreciate hearing from another agonizer about this decision. (Also, has anyone had experiencw with a prone breast board? that's one in which the patient lies face down, breasts going through some cut-outs, thus reducing the amount of radiation to internal organs, etc.)

Atid
I had a lumpectomy followed by chemo and radiation in my left breast 16 years ago. Seven months ago I found a large lump under my right arm. My cancer came back in the breast that was radiated, by-passed my right breast and spread to my lymph nodes under my right arm. I had all the tests to find out that it has not spread past the lymph nodes. My case is very unusual. All cases are different. My radiation did not prevent a recurrance, but it did complicate the double mastectomy I had in December. Radiated skin will not heal. I had to have a flap of skin and muscle taken from my back to cover the hole in my left chest when my breast was removed. The radiated tissue had to be removed down to the chest wall. I also had a skin graft, but it's still not enough to replace all the tissue distroyed by radiation. I'll have to have another flap surgery from my belly after I'm done with chemo. Luckily, at my age I have plenty of flabby skin for flaps! You need to do what you feel best, and have doctors that you can trust. Get 2nd opinions if you feel the need to do that.
Hi,
I was initially diagnosed with breast cancer May 30, 2006. It was a terrible year to say the least. I kind of blame myself tho cuz when I went for my mammogram on may 30th I was told I hadn't been in for 10 years. I couldn't believe it had been that long. I had been so adimant about getting them yearly til we moved to arizona. I guess life got so busy. What an excuse huh.

I was diagnosed with infiltrating ductal/tubular cancer. My tumor was up to 3.5 cm. and my sentinel node biopsy showed 5 positive nodes out of 10. I was petrified.

When I saw my oncologist the first day (I wouldn't want their job thats for sure) she told me I was a Stage 3 (3 positive would have been stage 2) and if I did nothing my 10 year survival rate was 30%. My husband and I were shocked and looked at each other (because of the way she worded it- all she initially said was my survival rate was 30%). After finishing her sentence (adding if you do nothing) she explained to us what my options were and how much each treatment would help. So basically if I had chemo/radiation/hormone replacement therapy) my 10 yr survival rate went up from 30% to 76%. Its not 100% but nothing is and 76 sure beat 30.

Chemo wasn't bad but it was rough. All depends on what drugs they use on you. I received Adriamycin, Cytoxan and Taxol. Taxol was the worse on me but I knew I had to do it to live longer. No guarantees but I'm not ready to die. I then had 26 treatments of external beam radiation followed by 5 stronger doses they call booster treatments right on my mastectomy incision where the main tumor was found. Being a diabetic I was nervous about the radiation but it went well. I did get a burn on my neck to my chest the last week but it healed fine. They had me use aquaphor on my chest from day one after each treatment and when I was home as long as not within 2 hrs of my treatment. It really helped my skin alot and no problems as far as my diabetes went.

Chemo affected my diabetes because they give you steroids with each treatment. So I just ended up on insulin because steroids shoot your blood sugars way high. My highest was in the 500s.

Now I'm on the Arimidex 1mg a day for the next 5 years. I'm not sure what side-effects to blame to what. I have neuropathy in my hands and feet but my oncologist said that should go away in six months. But my diabetes will keep some of it but it is better. I've had hip pain with pain radiation down my right leg to my knee. My oncologist didn't think that was related to my arimidex because I have ruined my lumbar spine related to my job for 38 years. She said usually arimidex bone pain will be in your hands or feet so i'm not sure. It too is better tho because of physical therapy i've been getting.

My personal opinion is I would do it again even tho parts were rough. I'm not ready to leave this world yet, haven't met all my goals in life :)

Sorry didn't mean to rattle on.

Linda :)