February 29, 2012
My husband read about ICAN in the December 2011 Newsweek article and encouraged me to contact them. We had just emerged from several months of intense treatment for metastatic Stage IV breast cancer (my original diagnosis and treatment was in 2006), including emergency spine surgery, and almost eight weeks of radiation treatment. When a Pet scan revealed there was no improvement but actually progression in my disease on hormone therapy, we were both stunned, scared and very disappointed. After a few days of processing this bad news, I pulled up the ICAN website and sent off an email immediately. Within a few days I was speaking to Marcia Horn, President and CEO of ICAN. Our conversation took almost an hour of Marcia's time, while I feverishly scribbled down notes. Before speaking to Marcia that morning, I was feeling terribly anxious and pessimistic. Marcia urged me to join the percentage of breast cancer patients who have survived their odds, suggesting names of exciting new treatments and specialists who would consult with me. Marcia urged me to consider taking a closer, more comprehensive look at my individual pathology and gave me information to follow up with Caris Life Sciences, a state of the art lab in Dallas doing some very exciting work. We are still waiting to determine if chemotherapy is next in line for me, but at Marcia's insistence we are now in the position to determine what might be the most effective step for me. And one that might save my life. I am only 48 years old and have two young daughters and a loving husband and family to live for. The next time I saw my doctor I came with a stack of notes and questions, and now the data of the Caris lab results. I am so grateful for Marcia and her team of volunteers at ICAN for giving me a sense of empowerment at this most critical time of my life.
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MY ROLE:Client Served