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time again to squeeze your lemons for signs of breast cancer...
i've been very concerned about a hot, painful lumpiness growing in my remaining breast. it is 2 years since my diagnosis + grim prognosis that i'd likely recur within 2 years. i had an exam last thursday with my oncologist + she said it feels normal.
i read about breast thermography in a booklet from whole foods market called pink and green (alternative breast cancer news). it says thermography is nearly flawless detection years earlier than mammograms, there's no radiation or painful compression, so teenagers can have them (which interests me for my daughter). a thermogram is pictures with an infrared camera every so often to compare heat patterns that are supposed to be unique to each person. i'm very interested in thermography for myself, my daughter + everyone. my large lemon sized tumor was not visible on mammograms, so i assumed it was a plugged milk duct from breastfeeding. meanwhile, the cancer was growing rapidly + spreading to the lymph nodes. now that i've had an excellent response to chemotherapy + i'm recovering from a mastectomy + lymphedema from lymph node dissection, i'm on "high surveillance" for recurrence, which is not comforting, because it consists of mammograms + manual exams, backed up by ultrasounds + MRIs. i remember the noticeable heat i felt from the tumor + it's vascular blood supply it had grown to feed itself, so i'm very interested in more information about thermograms. i showed the article to my oncologist thursday + told her i wanted to be referred, since she knows i think mammograms are a waste of time for me, + don't want their additional radiation + painful compression, but insurance forces me to get them, before i can also get an ultrasound + MRI (the ultrasound shows whether masses are solid (cancer) or liquid (benign) + the MRI shows detailed pictures, as opposed to mammograms that look like black storm clouds + may have white spots of calcification that indicate tumors. not all tumors are calcified (like mine), so mammograms aren't effective for everyone, but all tumors grow their own veins to feed themselves, so thermograms are for everyone. i'm going to look into this more though, because it's not listed on breastcancer.org or memorial sloan-kettering cancer hospital, 2 trusted resources.
komen.org says "Thermography was used as a screening and diagnostic tool until the 1980’s, when mammography was shown to be more accurate . The test uses infrared light emissions to measure temperature variations on the surface of the breast. Abnormal temperature patterns can signal a problem in the breast. However, many benign conditions also cause abnormal heat patterns, and thermography cannot distinguish between those patterns that are non-cancerous and those that are of concern . Additionally, because thermography measures heat at the surface of the breast, it is not good at detecting cancers deeper within the breast tissue. Although future improvements on this technology may make it a useful tool for staging disease or confirming diagnosis, thermography has limited ability as a screening technique [25,52]."(maybe the technology has advanced)
also at komen.org are breast cancer awareness videos by cynthia nixon who plays miranda in Sex and the City on tv + Sex and the City: The Movie. i'm sad + happy to say that cynthia is a breast cancer survivor + so is her mother. to celebrate their recovery + the launch of cynthia's new movie, she would like mod*mom readers to enter to win a copy of the Sex and the City: the Movie book.
mod*mom giveaway:: 5 Sex and the City: The Movie books
watch cynthia's breast cancer messages at komen.org + tell me in the comments something you liked or learned. include your email address + url, before midnight, monday july 7
*use the little envelope icon below this post to share this with your friends
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by ~mod*mom~ at 15.6.08 Â©
Great news for YOU! I didn't know Cynthia Nixon went through Breast Cancer. So that's something I learned and I enjoyed her podcasts.
I love Cynthia Nixon, and I'm so proud of her for doing this
how to stay positive
For Kristin my daughter.A Survivor.
She made a good point about gay women possibly missing out on testing, etc. due to less OB/GYN visits for birth control or reproductive issues.
Sounds like an informative book
Breast cancer is toooo common. Glad your tests went well.
I like how she stresses the importance of vigilance. I'm 38 years old and have Stage IV breast cancer. No history of it in my family! I found the lump myself, but by then it had already spread to my bones.
thank you for reading this + watching cythia's videos pals! i'm so glad she's reminding us too.
wow, didn't know she was a survivior.
I learned that Cynthia Nixon is a survivor (She has a HOT partner!)
I have learned that Cynthia Nixon and Suzan, there is hope for other women because they are ambassadors who (for Cynthia) have been there two times over from surviving it through her mother and herself.
i love bringing attention of breast cancer to all- its such undiscovered territory
I admire her for bringing attention to such a worthy cause and she reminded me to stay vigilant in looking for lumps - I admit this is often something I skip over because I have no history of breast cancer in my family - big mistake, I know.
staying positive and getting early diagnosis is so important
Her attitude rocks. I think for any type of cancer, your attitude towards it can really make a difference in your recovery.
I had a scare earlier this year, and it turned out to be a benign tumor. Cynthia is absolutely correct, KNOW YOUR BODY! Its so very important that you give yourself routine breast examinations even if your family doesn't have a history of breast cancer or you think you're too young to get it!
I liked Cynthia Nixon's comments on early detections. The screening tests are so important. It is easy to get busy and let the screening tests go.
It is terrific that she is bringing attention to something so important to health.
i want to win
always be positive, good luck to you
I learned that people care about each other and want you to be healthy.
don't put off that mamogram, it could save your life
the website taught me about the unique issues facing gay women. thanks for the contest
I like the fact that she takes her celebrity status and fights for what is truly important...health...and is working so hard to make us more aware of this disease that we much continue to fight for to find a cure. THANKS
Learned more about her and admire how she is so down to earth in spite of the fact she is a mega star
I learned that early diagnosis is SO important. email@example.com
Wasn't aware that Cynthia Nixon was a survivor. Learned that early detection is key.
Loved the broadcast, I'm so glad that they stressed frequent checks.
i learned that Susan G. Komen for the Cure has been named the top-rated charity by Charity Navigator. i was not surprised to learn that.
I love that more and more Breast cancer is being supported by organizations, and that more women like Cynthia are fighting back. thanks for reminding me I need to make my yearly appointment. Please enter me thank you
Interesting info on gay women
I had no idea cynthia nixon had breast cancer. That is something that I learned.
i didn't know she had breast cancer, but i liked her "know your body" message because early detection is the best medicine
This was really moving. I hadn't even considered lesbian women having more late detection in breast cancer due to less OB-GYN visits because of diminished reproductive concerns. I love it when I learn something new! Thanks! :) Really informative.
I like that she stresses the vigilance side and catching it early.
thanks for the info-she said to know your own body, and that gay women had unique issues that maybe they do not see their Doctors as often, I had not thought of that
I liked how she drives home the importance of screening and early detection. We hear this all the time, and yet many do not pay attention. I like how she gives the strengths and weaknesses of each of the standard ways of screening.
great contest and thank you for making others aware of breast cancer. firstname.lastname@example.org
catching it early
Pink can be beautiful. My sister would love this. Please accept my entry.
Hey, Mod*Mom, just catching up in your archives a bit ... sorry to hear that you've got some lumpiness again. I hope that it resolves or that you get a test that brings you peace.
thank you so much for including me in the new blog susan! i'm so glad you're feeling well enough to blog. the lumpiness reminds me to appreciate every minute + not take life for granted.
The message to stay positive, which I know I wouldn't be able to do.
I did not know that Ms. Nixon was a breast cancer survivor.
it is very generous of you to share the story with readers.
I learned the importance of having screenings for early detection. email@example.com
The commonality of breast cancer in women is what I learned most.
What I learned most is that breast cancer can affect all ages. I think that I had always assumed it was more geared toward my age.
To maintain a positive attitude!
always be positive
I learned that Cynthia Nixon is a breast cancer survivor.
The importance of early detection
I learned that there is a good chance at surviving breast cancer if it is caught early enough. Thanks for the giveaway!!
Early detection can be a life saver.
I think the positive attitude is very important!
That you should know your body....you should be the first line of defense in early detection! Thanks for the contest!
Early detection is key
Early detection is the key.
It does not have to be a "Death Sentence" !
cynthia nixon is a survivor i had no idea
The emphasis on Early Detection in Cynthia's message is the most crucial point....
I like that she is sharing her story and is so positive. I also like that she is encouraging people to participate in the race for the cure.
You can't go through this struggle alone.
Having a positive attitude can help.
you can make it,stay strong! firstname.lastname@example.org
You can't go through this struggle alone.
I liked how she emphasizes the importance of screening and early detection. I am so glad that it was stressed to have frequent checks and to keep a positive attitude.
I learned that breast cancer can strike anyone.
I learned that Cynthia Nixon is a survivor
I liked that Cynthia Nixon stressed the importance of staying positive.