Carol was diagnosed with Stage IV metastatic breast cancer on Friday, February 13, 2015. She had noticed a knot in her right breast for several years, but tried to ignore it. After several years, the knot grew so large that it could no longer be ignored. This prompted a visit to the emergency department at TriStar Summit Medical Center in Hermitage, Tenn.
The ER took care of her and referred her to a surgeon, which is where she met her nurse navigator. The tumor was too big to operate, so they discussed other options.
“I thought about walking out the door and dealing with my cancer at home. But then I realized that I wanted to live- I had an ocean I wanted to put my toes in. I had flowers I wanted to plant. That’s when I decided I was going to fight
Carol had excellent results from taking a new breast cancer medication and continues to improve. She takes two oral medications daily, a hormonal therapy drug and a newer FDA approved drug, a CDK 4/6 inhibitor. Carol visits her oncologist every three months for a check-up and scans. Her tumor continues to shrink and she continues to do well.
“My dad died of cancer in 1986. They sure have come a long way in cancer treatment since then – I never wanted to go through what he went through. But I am feeling pretty good and was able to dip my toes in the ocean after all- what a wonderful experience!”
Carol is enjoying her life with a lot of support from family, church, friends and of course, her nurse navigator, Brenda.
"Cancer treatment can be expensive. Brenda has helped me navigate the financial aspect of my cancer journey and has filled out forms for me, made copies of bills and called resources for me. She’s been such an incredible help.”