Wednesday, November 14, 2012


It has been a year since my diagnosis.... so sorry... I have had times of not feeling like talking... but I know I need to start talking... not just for myself... but for others who are diagnosed and need information.... brief.....
I recently wrote a testimonial letter for my surgeons....

I WILL ELABORATE MORE IN FUTURE POSTS... but I feel it is important for patients to know there might be more options and support avenues out there !!!
PART OF MY STORY... in brief....
(my testimonial to Dr C and Dr M !)

Dr Cassileth and Dr Memsic are two of the most wonderful women I have ever met. 
I wish I had known about them last year at this time... I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer a year ago in October of 2011. I was swept off to a lumpectomy with my health insurance company....  for what doctors thought was a “pea” sized tumor. Maybe my original doctors should have ordered an MRI to know what was actually in my “dense breasts” .. because when I woke from the lumpectomy surgery...I was told that it was worse than they thought...a six cm tumor with involved lymph nodes...  and that I would be sent back for a Mastectomy in the Spring of 2012 after chemo.... my doctors took three months to get me into Chemo, I was done with that April 19, 2012.... and was referred to Radiation. As it turned out, they thought I could just have chemo and Radiation ... and then would be sent in a few months for the Mastectomy... would heal for a year, then could go in for reconstructive surgery and expanders by 2013.....
During my last week of chemo, a friend told me about Dr Cassileth and that I should talk to her before getting Radiation because radiation can affect the skin, and maybe I should have the Mastectomy first. I was given the website for Dr Cassileth....  I was frantic because I was supposed to start Radiation soon.... and so I wrote a crazy long email to Dr Cassileth late on a Friday night ... and two days later  I received a call from Dr Lisa Cassileth. WOW.... I was in tears... she read my letter and took the time to call me... that fast... and she was totally understanding of my sense of urgency.... she then had her staff call me to arrange appointments with she and Dr Memsic.... and about two weeks later I had my Double Mastectomy with Immediate Reconstruction. These AMAZING doctors and staff at Dr Cassileth’s Office took fabulous care of me from the moment I met them. 
Consultations, decisions, photos, scheduling .... I was in for my surgery at 8am on a Wednesday... I woke at 12:40pm.... stood, then was sat in a wheel chair, taken to a car... and they transported me to the aftercare facility nearby. I spent Wednesday and Thursday night in aftercare ... was then released Friday morning, went by Dr C’s for a check-in... then went home. I was off pain meds in three days... and went grocery shopping two days later ! I am not one to sit around, but the Doctors told me I needed to take it easy and to heal properly ... I followed their instructions... and healed fabulously ! 
I came back weekly, to Dr’s Cassileth & Memsic... for the exquisite, kind and caring followups after surgery. I continued following their instructions and continued healing and loving my feelings of “normal” !.... As with anything... there have been adjustments.... but I feel like I have a lot of normalcy to my life that I may not have if I had not made this decision .... 
This year, this diagnosis... the thought that I would have to have multiple surgeries if I had gone with what my first doctors recommended.... lumpectomy, mastectomy, radiation, a year of healing, then more surgery for expanders, months of expanding ... then surgery to remove expanders and insert implants.... I KNEW I HAD TO CONSIDER MORE OPTIONS....... I KNEW I HAD TO CHECK THESE DOCTORS OUT... THEN I KNEW I WANTED TO HAVE MY SURGERY & RECONSTRUCTION at Dr Cassileth’s office !
I feel great .... everyone who has seen me from the day after surgery to the present... cannot believe that I had surgery. I credit this positive and fabulous experience to Dr Cassileth & Dr Memsic and the staff at this wonderful facility ! They took great care of me ... and their expertise has allowed me to have some normal back in my life much quicker and more efficiently than if I had settled for my previous doctors recommendations ! I love this office and these doctors ... and I love what Dr Cassileth and Dr Memsic did for me.... they gave me hope, they cared for me... and they helped me get some normal... back in my life ! 
Just think... if I hadn’t found them... if I hadn’t decided to go to them.... about now.... I would probably be getting scheduled for the mastectomies and would then be looking at healing until October 2013... and might then be ready for expander surgery in October of 2014.... have months of expanding.... then maybe expander removal with implant insertion around April of 2015.... and months of healing.... 
It is November of 2012.... and I already had my mastectomy surgery, had radiation, and I have boobs... and I’ve got that feeling of normal and well being.... Life is Good... 2012 ! 
Thank you Dr Cassileth and Dr Memsic.... you will always be special to me ! 
❤ Janet R.

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