Ernestine Gregorcyk - Diagnosed at 63
Before I was diagnosed with breast cancer I was placed on the liver transplant list. I was at the Dallas Liver Institute for a series of health checks for my liver, and I had a mammogram done while there. I thought I had felt a tiny lump in my breast but was unsure. Soon enough I found out that was what I felt.
I came back to Lubbock with a flash drive full of documentation and my mammogram and brought it to the UMC Southwest Cancer Center. Within a week, I had a biopsy, diagnosis and a lumpectomy. My liver transplant was put on hold, as I was removed from the transplant list. I had to conquer cancer so that I could get back on that list! After 20 sessions of radiation therapy I was able to do just that.
Dr. Rahman, my surgical oncologist, Dr. Ramzi, my Radiation Oncologist, and Dr. Jones, my medical oncologist made my care transitions smooth. Dr. Ramzi personally called my care team at the Dallas Liver Institute to tell them treatment was over and I could be put back on the transplant list. I felt so supported and celebrated by the radiation oncology team‐‐they went all out for my radiation graduation. I could say so much more than that! I feel so lucky my breast cancer was caught early and that my care team at the UMC Southwest Cancer Center gave me my life back.
My advice for current and future fighters: Have faith through this process. Also, listen to your body. If you feel you need rest, rest. If you feel you can go out and do, go out and do! And remember you are not alone; many others are with you.