"I was diagnosed in January of this year at age 25. I had found a lump the previous August and felt like it appeared overnight. I went for an ultrasound (no mammo due to my age) and was told everything was fine. About 4 months went by and the lump kept growing. I went back and insisted on another ultrasound and was whisked away to a mammo immediately afterward. BIRADS 5. Biopsy the next week, but that came back inconclusive. The mammo also picked up at least 3 lymph nodes involved. In early January I had lymph node removal surgery and they were able to test those tissues and determine the cancer diagnosis.
"I had neoadjuvant chemo (chemo before surgery) and have completed the AC part of it. I am now midway through the Taxol. The tumor responded some to the AC but it has shrunk away completely on the Taxol, even in the involved lymph nodes. I will go for a bilateral mastectomy in August -- my choice because of TNBC's traction of recurrences. I also have a mass on the bone in my sternum, though I have no sense of if it has shrunk or not. I guess we will see with some scans once chemo is over.
"I just got the results of my genetics testing as well. I was negative for 6 of the genes that were tested and came back inconclusive for the CHEK2 gene. I was hoping genetics testing would give some answers on why this happened to me so young, but I guess I will continue the search for answers in other places!
"Overall, I've been able to maintain a really positive attitude through support of my friends and family, as well as reading the boards here! I totally understand that everyone copes differently, but I refuse to give in to the dark places until it's time."
-- seejuliago, diagnosed triple negative in January 2016