Leslie's story: Recurrences don't indicate loss of hope

Columbus, GASeptember 16, 2011 

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1997, at the early age of 37. I chose to have a bilateral mastectomy with tramflap reconstruction. Doctors Wilson and Scarborough did a wonderful job and I was pleased with the way they looked.....tramflap is when they use your own stomach fat and muscles to build up your breasts.

I had to go through chemotherapy....and learned that Dr. Antonio Rodriguez is absolutely amazing!!! Smart and sooooooo funny!! He was exactly what I needed.

Despite having both breasts removed...I had recurrences in 2004, 2007 and 2009. I thank John B. Amos and Dr. Charles Scarborough for keeping close tabs on me!! I went through chemo three more times and radiation twice more. Dr. Cuiba is fantastic too!!

What many people don't realize about the whole cancer thing is that it is a process. There is a diagnosis, second opinions, surgeries, chemos, radiation, and a myriad of other tests. It takes a long time to regain your energy... not to mention your hair!!! HaHaHa. We're talking at least a year or more for the whole process.

I am so lucky to have been surrounded by wonderful friends, family and doctors!! I never thought about not making it....after all, I am a MOM. I already knew what was important in my life..my son and daughter....cancer just let me know exactly how tough I am...

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