• Cancer Patient Stories

    Rapid Breast Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment: Pam’s Story

Pam N from Michigan submitted her story via email this week, saying: "I am sharing my Mayo Clinic story with you in hopes that it will help other women who may be diagnosed with Inflammatory Breast Cancer. Inflammatory Breast Cancer is the most aggressive form of breast cancer. So a quick diagnosis and treatment is key to long term survival."

Here is Pam's story, as she sent it via email:

I had just turned 40 when I noticed slight edema in her left breast where the under wire from my bra was. I didn’t think much more about it that day. But the next day I noticed that it turned slightly red. It was then that I googled “Breast Edema.” Two possibilities came up, both appeared on www.MayoClinic.com – Inflammatory Breast Cancer and Mastitis. I had never heard of either one not ever having any children. But I knew something was wrong, I just didn't know what it was. I hadn’t even had my 40th birthday mammogram yet!

So I immediately called Mayo Clinic for an appointment where I was promptly seen at the Breast Clinic in Rochester. It was there that I learned that I had Inflammatory Breast Cancer on the same day of my initial consult. This is the most aggressive form of breast cancer and does not present itself until it is in late stages of the disease. So a quick diagnosis and start of treatment is key to survival with this type of breast cancer. The timeframe from the 1st day that I noticed symptoms to my 1st day of chemo was just over a week. I am convinced that the immediate diagnosis and treatment by Mayo Clinic Physicians is the reason that I am alive today and living happily in Michigan with my husband and dog, Betty.

Thanks to Pam for sharing her story!

If you would like to tell yours, see the Share Your Mayo Clinic Story page for options.

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