Thursday, October 4, 2012

My Cancer Calendar

I've been able to document everything so far, but here are the dates gathered in one entry : 

August 13, 2012

In the morning, I discovered the lump in my left breast 
In the afternoon, I was at my OB-Gyne's clinic to have her look at the lump

August 14, 2012

I met Dr. Aldine Basa, Breast Surgeon, for the first time upon my OB's reco
She ordered a breast ultrasound for the next day

August 15, 2012

Underwent a breast ultrasound at the Breast Clinic of The Medical City

August 16, 2012

Reading of breast ultrasound c/o Dr. Basa (highly suspicious of malignancy)
Further testing recommended
Core Needle Biopsy scheduled for the next day

August 17, 2012

Core Needle Biopsy Procedure at the Breast Clinic of The Medical City

Then this is where it got REALLY challenging. August 17 was a Friday. The weekend that followed was a very long one --- 4 days. Work resumed on Wednesday, August 22, but Dr. Basa's clinic at TMC was on August 23! We waited that long to know the results of the biopsy!

August 23, 2012 - the day my life changed

Reading of core needle biopsy result c/o Dr. Basa
Verdict : "it's not good..." Lump is malignant, positive of cancer
I was told that I have Invasive Ductal Carcinoma and it looks like it's at stage 2.

At this point, Dr Basa gave me all my options, told me that I would have to undergo a mastectomy of the left breast because a lumpectomy would only deform the breast severely. I was also presented with the option of having reconstructive breast surgery c/o Dr. Catherine (Yen) Asedillo. N and I were given 2 weeks to explore, research, decide.

August 24, 2012

We went to the UST Hospital, to Dr. Renato Reyes, Surgeon, for a 2nd opinion. He gave us so much hope by telling me that my lymph nodes were uncompromised (no cancer cells have crawled to the immediate area in the armpit). He also was more specific about the staging --- 2a, early stage. Yes! Although the diagnosis was purely clinical at this point, it definitely made me more positive than ever.

(Fast forward to) September 12, 2012

The day of the surgeries in TMC
I chose to have a Skin Sparing Mastectomy, Reconstructive Breast Surgery (Tram Flap), Sentinel Nodes Dissection and Frozen Section Biopsy. My doctors also discovered during the procedure that I had hernia from my pregnancies so they repaired it. I went through so much and was out and under general anaesthesia for more than 8 hours.

September 17, 2012

I was discharged from the hospital and was back home by dinner time.

And again ... fast forward to today, October 4, 2012

Still in recovery but recovering so well! Waiting to heal completely before my 6 cycles of chemotherapy treatments start on the week of October 22.

As you will notice, I didn't waste time since I discovered my lump on August 13. I hate to say it but I've been to Medical City more often than I would like. But I want to get this over with, I need to get well. The chemo sessions will end this very challenging chapter.

I can't wait!

P.S. I asked my doctor (because I wanted to hear it from an expert's mouth) if I can officially say that the cancer is out and she said that since there was no metastasis discovered during surgery and the lump was successfully extracted, the answer is YES :) :) :)


  1. God is AMAZING! He was and will still be with us. As long as we hold on to Him, things will be alright, Hon. I love you more than ever.

  2. God is good, ALL the time! :) Glad to hear about it, Patty!

  3. Hi Jen! Yes, HE is. I will praise Him forever for this! :)

  4. My strength also comes from you! I love you, too.

  5. God is indeed, our Saviour and our Healer. :)
    Get well soon, Ms. Patty! Onward to full recovery and good health! :)

  6. Yes, He is! Thank you so much! :)

  7. Hi Patty. I discovered your blog while googling Dr. Aldine's name a couple of weeks back. She is my breast surgeon too. Had the exact same surgery as yours (last September 26)! Down to the sentinel nodes removal and reconstruction. Had a double mastectomy, though. Purely prophylactic for the right breast. Eric Arcilla is my plastic surgeon. You will be a couple of weeks ahead of me for chemo. Mine will be coupled with Herceptin doses as my cancer is her2 positive. I wish you well as you go forward with this new stage of the journey, as I've come to call it.

  8. Hi, Terry. Thanks for your comment and I hope you're recovering well from your surgery. I'm much better today and I can't believe it will be a month since then tomorrow. If you wish to hook up outside of my blog so we can be more detailed in our discussions, you can email me at It would be nice to share thoughts and compare notes. Since I'm going to have chemo sooner than you, I might be able to share some inputs on that, too. I wish you well!

  9. I will send you an email soon. While my family has been unbelievably supportive, I feel the need now to reach out to people who have gone through or are going through the same cancer journey. Chemo, I am actually more apprehensive about than the surgery. My email address is Touch base soon! :-)