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CHRISTINE S. LIVING WITH BREAST CANCER


When I was diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer, my gynaecologic oncologist told me about the possibility of a diagnostic test that could provide more information about my tumour.

For several reasons, I followed the advice of my surgeon and chose to undergo surgery and take the test. The aim was to avoid chemotherapy, which initially seemed to be a likely treatment option. When the results arrived (about 10 days after sending the biopsy to California), it turned out that I could actually avoid chemotherapy if I wanted to.

As I am a trained biologist, I was able to discuss my illness with my surgeon at length, and he explained all the risks and benefits of chemotherapy. Subsequently, my surgeon also contacted the Orleans hospital team in charge of my radiotherapy. In my case, everyone agreed that the right course of action would be to adapt my treatment to radiotherapy and hormone therapy only.

The radiotherapy treatment is tiring, and I had to reduce my working time to 60%. But I am happy to be able to continue working because it helps me feel better.

Like so many women who have experienced this, my life has really changed. I appreciate everything much more than before and I do everything I can to try to get better. I am very happy that I do not have the extra burden of chemotherapy, which I believe would have made my life more difficult. I am a mother of 5 children and so I already have a lot of responsibility resting on my shoulders.

I recommend this test to all those who may be able to benefit from it!

Before I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I had never heard of diagnostic tests. It is very important that women know that molecular testing exists and that it allows people to obtain additional information on certain types of tumours. This can help to avoid, in certain cases, unnecessary treatment through chemotherapy or other treatments. In addition to the savings in terms of treatment, I am convinced that this test helps to give women a comfort of life when they need it the most.

 

Please note that the Personalised Medicine Awareness Month Patient Stories are available in 11 more languages on the dedicated ECPC Website and can be downloaded from the Campaign Action Toolkit.