Friday, December 7, 2012

Survivor Spotlight: Janet's Story

Meet Janet. In 1994, at the age of 37, while working full-time as a dental receptionist and living in Milwaukee County, Janet was diagnosed with breast cancer. With a positive attitude and a goal to live, she underwent a lumpectomy and radiation, and was soon cancer-free. From that point on, Janet was sure to receive an annual mammogram.

 In 2009, she felt there was something wrong with her body and went for a mammogram and ultrasound. The doctor said she was cancer-free and he would see her in a year. Months went by and she continued to feel uneasy about her health, so she changed facilities. There, at her next annual mammogram appointment, she learned she was misdiagnosed in 2009 and was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time in 2010. Janet struggled more hearing this for the second time, but soon realized she didn’t want to feel sorry for herself. She decided to undergo a mastectomy. During chemotherapy, Janet’s nurses informed her of Susan G. Komen. Komen provided her with funding to pay for her deductibles.

In 2011 Janet had painful plastic surgery, but is now cancer-free and has regular consultations. “Realistically you never forget about it, but you can’t dwell on the negative.” Janet said the hardest part of breast cancer was the pain of chemotherapy and losing her hair. She especially struggled in 2010 when she was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time. Janet encourages those struggling with the disease to “be positive, be strong and don’t let cancer beat you.”

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