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?s before a lumpectomy...
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Chris77 posted:
Thanks in advance to anyone reading this. I'm posting some ?s about my girlfriends mother who has a malignant tumor on her breast. They're going in this week to meet with doctors and chose someone to perform the lumpectomy. I realize this list below is long, but if any of you would be kind enough to chime in to any of these below it would be greatly appreciated. So much information is out there on the web obviously, but being able to ask ?s and learn specifically on this forum is a blessing and an amazing tool. I'm simply attempting to help them gather the necessary information and weed out the useless ?s from the more important ones, since the physicians they deal with will most likely be busy and thus I wanted to help them format a list of ?s that will count.

A bit of background information. My girlfriends mother (and hopefully my future mother in law someday, is 61, and generally in good health. (some high cholesterol but nothing else major) She noticed a lump in her breast recently (her last checkup was 3 years ago) and went in and they did a scan/biopsy and the results came in last week as to the tumor being malignant unfortunately. The good news is that they said its in the early stages and thus they're going to proceed with a lumpectomy and probably radiation afterward.

Here are the questions, please forgive my ignorance as I know nothing about breast cancer (especially being a guy) and am in the beginning stages of research so some of these ?s may seem silly.


1) Is it beneficial to start the lumpectomy asap? What is the window of time to make the decision in terms of time itself affecting the possible growth of the tumor?
2) Can she still exercise (golf) or go to a sauna or could that negatively affect the tumor?
3) is light exercise beneficial ?
4) dietary restrictions?
5) general advice/tips before the procedure in terms of things she can do to get in optimal health beforehand.
6) generally is it best for her to keep her overall activity levels low (low movement, etc try to avoid stress) or does this have no outcome on the progression of the tumor itself.
7) Clothing choices that are preferred when you have a malignant tumor or is this a non issue. (Bra s etc)
Is there a preferred sleeping position? (On back, side ? Don't sleep on stomach face down for example?
9) Basically is there anything that's been known to accelerate or has the possibility to accelerate the growth of the tumor before the scheduled procedure.
10) how much does this procedure price range vary in Illinois compared to Wisconsin or Indiana?
11) how basic or general is this procedure and how experienced should the physician be at the minimum, are there physicians who specialize in lumpectomy?
12) what are all of the various grants and other financial programs out there to assist breast cancer patients , how long does it take to find out if you re possibly approved once submitted and if approved can you immediately utilize this? (Timeline ?)
13) are supplements OK before the procedure or are there certain vitamins that are discouraged or could even be detrimental?
14) how important is getting enough rest before and after the procedure?
15) are there any other general health related check ups or inquiries she should do before the procedure for peace of mind?
16) what is the range of price points for the lumpectomy/possible aftercare treatments and where does this discrepancy derive from? (Physician/hospital/reputation/advanced equipment fees)

Again thanks to all and any responses to this long thread!
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rachael67 responded:
Chris, may I first congratulate you for caring enough to ask all these questions!

I will begin wit the very best advice we give to all our members and to those who love them: Don't forget to breathe!!! Any kind of serious diagnosis tends to quite literally take your breath away., We are under some strange illusion that if we hold our breath, everything will resume where it once was and this whole chapter of our life will be over! Sadly, that is far form the truth...Holding your breath only tends to increase the stress level and make things much worse! So...Learn to take slow, deep breaths in and slowly breathe out. Again, in and out. Repeat until the chaos begins to take a semblance of controllable proportions.

Second suggestion: Please read through the "Tips" and "Resources" on the right side of this page. There you will find many answers to your questions as well as information you may not even have begun to address. Scroll thru them all.

If there are questions you have asked which are not answered there, please come back and ask away. That list was originally designed so that we wouldn't have to reinvent the wheel each time, but would have an ongoing list of basic answers.. But we do try to never leave anyone out in the cold.

Lastly, I found that facing my diagnosis was much like trying to feast on an elephant! If I insisted on trying to eat it all in one mouthful, I would choke! However, if I took small bites, small bits one day at a time, things were much more easily digested. It worked for me...Give it a try.

Blessings on all of you. Please let us know how things are going.

Rachael
Just when the caterpillar thought her world was over, she became a butterfly! Don't give up five minutes before the miracle!!
 
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jenna291 replied to rachael67's response:
Chris,
You are a wonderful and caring person for coming here with your questions. I found sports bras most comfortable while healing, the larger the better as there will be a lot of swelling.
It is always wise to eat nutritious meals to the best of your ability. My docs used to tell me to eat whatever I could tolerate, and be sure to drink as much as possible - fruit juice, herbal teas, water.
The procedure should be done by a surgeon who is a breast specialist. This person, and the primary care doctor, should be able to help with a lot of your questions.
best of luck and keep us in the loop ~
Jenna
 
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