Friday, October 30, 2009

My Surgeon....

Clarian North's Breast Care Services Receive National Accreditation


CARMEL, Ind.—Clarian North Medical Center’s Breast Care program in Carmel has been granted a three-year, full accreditation designation by the National Accreditation Program for Breast Centers (NAPBC), a program administered by the American College of Surgeons. Clarian North is the first hospital in Indiana to receive this accreditation.

“We are honored to receive this designation and believe it is a result of the hard work, dedication and commitment our staff has to each patient,” said Dr. Patricia Kennedy, Medical Director of Clarian North’s Breast Care program. “We plan to continue providing all of our patients with the high-quality continuum of care they deserve as they face breast cancer or other breast health concerns.”

Accreditation by the NAPBC is only given to those centers that have voluntarily committed to provide the highest level of quality breast care. To qualify for the designation, the breast care program and its staff undergo a rigorous evaluation process and review of their performance. The program must prove that it provides comprehensive care that includes diagnostic, treatment and support services. Clarian North’s certified breast health navigator personally guides each patient through the care process once the patient has been diagnosed. The navigator ensures that comprehensive care and support resources are available throughout treatment and beyond.

During the accreditation survey process, the center must demonstrate compliance with standards established by the NAPBC for treating women who are diagnosed with the full spectrum of breast disease. The standards include proficiency in the areas of: center leadership, clinical management, research, community outreach, professional education, and quality improvement. A breast center that achieves NAPBC accreditation has demonstrated a firm commitment to offer its patients every significant advantage in their battle against breast disease.

Unfortunately, the battle against breast disease is not one that will soon go away. The American Cancer Society (ACS) estimated that there would be 192,569 women diagnosed with breast cancer in the United States in 2009 and an estimated 40,470 women would die from it. In addition, hundreds of thousands of women who will deal with benign breast disease this year will require medical evaluation for treatment options.

Receiving care at a NAPBC-accredited center like Clarian North Medical Center ensures that a patient will have access to:
Comprehensive care, from state-of-the-art digital breast imaging to survivorship care,

A multidisciplinary team approach to coordinate the best treatment options,

Support services, including complementary therapy and an oncology social worker,

Information about ongoing clinical trials and new treatment options,

And, most importantly,
Quality breast care close to home.

“The best defense against breast cancer is early detection,” said Dr. Kennedy. “It is imperative that women over 40 have annual mammograms to allow for early detection of cancer, which in turn, provides the best chance for recovery.”

To schedule a mammogram, see a breast specialist, or have a high risk consultation, please call Clarian North Breast Care at 317-688-3158. Learn more about Clarian North's Breast Care Services.

I should have known

I should have known that things don't get easier...

The other day I had to tell someone that I had cancer.  I guess I thought everyone knew about my health by now.  It was very difficult for me.  I could tell on the phone that they were upset.  Then I got teary eyed talking to them.

As my treatment gets closer to the end, the more nervous I am getting about everything.  I am starting to worry a little more about the outcome of the chemo.  I just continue to pray that things will go my way. 

Monday, October 19, 2009

Video About IBC

The following was posted on a bullentin board forum for young people with Breast Cancer. This is entry from a fellow IBC girl.

A new documentary from the creator of the award-winning film, My Longest Day, The IBC Project discusses the struggles of one woman's fight with Inflammatory Breast Cancer, and the general lack of knowledge about a disease that is commonly, and incorrectly, considered rare. Both the general public and the medical community are amazingly unfamiliar with this virulent affliction (the most aggressive form of breast cancer that is known), and the IBC Project is fighting against this ignorance.

No Lump. Still Cancer.

Get educated at:

I haven't had a chance to watch it yet. I am afraid I it will be to emotional. Wanted to share it with all of you.


Doctor's appointment today. White blood cell count is too low. Dr. K prescribed antibiotics just in case I get sick. She also said that I have to stay away from sick people for a week. I asked her if I could still go to the play (Mama Mia!!!) and she said yes. I think she knew I would be really upset if she told me no.

This past round Dr. K opted to not give me the nulasta shot since I did so well in Round's 1-4. Now, since my count is so low, I have to get it again for the rest of the rounds.

They had problems accessing my port again, Chase hit it so hard that day. Dr. K said that when they take my breasts the surgeon could fix it if necessary. The poor nurses end up having to push on my chest after the "stabbing" to get the i.v. started.

This weekend was an emotional roller coaster. I called what I had chemo rage. Would not have gotten the award for Mother of the Year. I think Chase, Campbell and I ended on the floor a couple of times just crying. Then we baked cookies with chocolate and peanut butter chips in them. Then Campbell and I decided to make a crust less pumpkin pie. They both got up on the chair next to the bar and helped measured ingredients. It was so cute.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Indy Strides Against Breast Cancer

We were a small team down in Indy, but a mighty one! We raised around $700 between the five of us and had a great time!

Friday, October 16, 2009


O.k. Here is the latest....

1. X-ray was negative. Dr. K ordered a bone scan for the 22nd of October just as a precaution.

2. One more week till Mama Mia!!!! I am so excited. I bought tickets for a myself and a friend in May. I can't wait to dance and sing to ABBA tunes.

3. The new drugs have made me extremely sore!!!! Today I felt a little better. I just can not wrestle with the kids.

4. I got a grant from the . It is an organization that gives breast cancer patients money for certain services. Todd and I selected housekeeping. We met our lady last night. I can't not wait for her to get started. It will be such a relief for Todd and I. One less thing to worry about.

5. I also got selected for a program called . I got two chemo angels who send me cards and encouraging words for the next few months. Will explain more at a later date.

Chemo this week with Melissa

As Melissa said, I wanted to take her to chemo this week. I didn't really know what to expect, but everything went well. It was a long day, this was a surprise to Melissa as well. I did get to meet Dr. K, which I did want to do. (Of course, I had already done my research about her online, I had to know who was treating my sister!) The treatment(s) itself was not bad, not painful. From what I understand, these new drugs should be a piece of cake compared to the first two Melissa received. The nurses seem to think she shouldn't have any major issues because she did so well during the first round.

The nurses all know Melissa, and I have to say there wasn't one that didn't smile or laugh when they saw her. Just another testament to Melissa's positive attitude. From her leopard print jacket, to her contagious laugh she has the ability to make everyone feel more at ease, or maybe it was just me...

Didn't get emotional until the next day at home. Had a little breakdown, haven't had one of those in a while. I know she is going to get through because of her strength and because of the many prayers (thank you) from all of you. But sometimes it just hits and you have to just let it out...

Oh yeah, one more thing - thank goodness we have laptops. To keep ourselves busy we did some shopping online, facebook, blog, email, etc. Of course, can't forget about my introduction to Cash Cab!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Chemo Round Number 5

Melinda brought me to chemo today. She said she wanted to experience it with me.

Below is what I have learned:

#1: Chase two weeks ago moved my port. Poor Nurse Jackie had to really work my port to get the infusion started. It was the most pain I have experience to date.

#2: My mugga scan showed a decrease heart function from 71% to 56%. This means they will monitor my heart function now every 2 months instead of every 3 months.

#3: Dr. Kakani said that I need an x-ray on my hip. So today after treatment I will go get an x-ray.

#4: My infusion will last a lot longer than those in the past. The drugs are taxotere and herceptin. Each drug today will take at least an hour and half each. After today, an hour each. They are also going to put a blood pressure cuff on me during one of my drug treatments.

#5: Doc confirmed that the lymph nodes are shrinking. She believes I now have calcifications in my breast. She sounded positive about it.

I will update you on the x-ray later.

Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk

Walked in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer on Saturday. What an emotional ride!!! I made it 2 miles. I felt like that was a huge accomplishment. I have been having hip pain for a few weeks. So I was excited that I could walk it. My team raised 1200 dollars. The opening ceremony really got to me. A survivor was talking about her children. That topic tends to be the one that sends my over the edge.

Mom, Melanie and family, tons of friends, co-workers, and Curves ladies walked for our team. See photos.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Mammogram Today!!!

Went and got my breast squished. They did a mammogram and an ultrasound. The mammagram had no surprises, the cancer is there. The ultrasound showed that my lymph nodes are shrinking. The lymph nodes used to like they had little fingers off of them. Now they look like they are balls. Yahoo!!! So at least, the chemo is working on the lymph nodes.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


I wanted to put chemo brain on my list yesterday, but I forgot.

So #11 of Things I Need to Remember Is...

That is o.k. to blame chemo on your memory loss.