Lindsay Diagnosed at 30

"It's amazing how naive I was about cancer and how long this journey would be, but I am so thankful to still be here fighting!"

My name is Lindsay, and I was diagnosed with stage III breast cancer at the young age of 30 during the height of the pandemic in May 2020.

I had no family history, and I discovered the bump one day when I got out of the shower. I had no symptoms, and I was too young to receive yearly screening. I immediately made an appointment with my primary care physician, and they honestly didn't think it was anything serious at my first appointment.

I pushed to get a mammogram, and they said immediately after I needed a "emergency biopsy." I received the painful biopsy along with several imaging tests like ultrasound. The following day, my doctor called me to confirm it was cancer.

I researched the best doctors in  my area. I did genetic testing as well ancd. I do not have the BRCA gene thankfully, but it made more of a mystery to get cancer this young with no family history.

My doctors told me I would have to start chemo right away, but fortunately I was able to do  IVF treatments for approximately two weeks. Which I am very thankful for, because some patients do not get that opportunity. I did my egg retrieval in June 2020 and they were able to freeze over 50 eggs!

Immediately after my egg retrieval, I started AC chemo for 6 treatments bi-weekly. The doctors didn't like that the AC wasn't working to shrink my tumor. The doctors then switched my chemo to weekly treatments with Taxol & Carbo. They also added in bi-weekly immunotherapy treatments.

After I was done with chemo & immunotherapy, I had about a month off before I had my double mastectomy with reconstruction in December 2020. I started my 25 treatments of radiation in February of this year and this believe it or not was the hardest part of my treatments.  My doctors put me on a trial drug which I believe made my treatment much harder. I was also given a bolis (wet towel) over my right breast during every treatment which irritated my skin so bad I had to go to the ER twice. My heart rate was skyrocketing & I wasn't able to do any activity along with a very bad wound from radiation.

I was given my fourth blood transfusion and saw a wound specialist which luckily did the trick. I then started an oral chemo in April 2021 and I am still currently on this medication. I believe I will go a hormone medication once I am done with this oral chemo for 5-10 years. It's amazing how naive I was about cancer and how long this journey would be, but I am so thankful to still be here fighting!

Are you a survivor, spouse, friend, or caretaker with a story to tell? We'd love to hear from you.

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