It is more important to know where you are going, than how long it takes to get there.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Genetic Testing...

After I purchased a new car, all of a sudden I noticed several cars on the road of the same make, and began pay attention to the prevalence of this model. After I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I began to notice more articles and issues related to this disease. I knew they were out there, but always glanced over them. One of these issues I heard about, but never gave much attention, was genetic testing for cancer.

I asked my oncologist, Dr. Vanilla Bean, about genetic testing for cancer. He explained that there is a test that isolates the BRCA 1 and BRCA 2 genes. If either of these genes shows any sign of distortion, then the chances of developing breast or ovarian cancer is in the 70 percentile!

So when I met with surgeon, Dr. No Nickname, I asked her about this test, and she said that I could have it, if I want. Helloooooooo, of course I want. The test involved meeting with a nurse practioner, Nurse Gene, where she asked me several questions regarding family medical history. After she gathered all the information, she put it into a formula, resulting in a 15% chance that I might carry this gene. Nurse Gene asked if I wanted to continue with the test, and my answer was "No Dah...., " actually, "Yes, of course." There was a matter of insurance, because not all insurance companies cover this test. Insurance seems to be the deciding factor for every single test, scan, appointment, tissue, bandaid, etc. I have an appointment with Nurse Gene next Friday, March 19 to talk about the results.

When I think of genetic testing, I always thought it was very involved - something like a pound of flesh. However, this test consisted of drawing some blood that was sent off to Utah for testing.

So far, throughout this process, I learned that you must be loaded with questions, and question every decision. If I had not asked about genetic testing, it would have never been offered to me.
I believe it is the patients duty to get ALL the information. No one gives you information regardng all the testing options available. No one.

The MRI biopsy on Thursday, March 18, is a result of me insisting that the unknown lesion on my right be checked before surgery. (So far, everything has been on the left.) I was told that the lesion on the right was nothing, but as I wrote a few days ago, something can't be nothing. I want to know exactly what this something is before surgery plans are finalized. It's like baking a batch of cookies, you check to see that you have all the ingredients before you preheat the oven.

Whacky thought for the day...
Why is it when you buy a new car, all of a sudden it seems like there are a lot more of that model on the road? (8 years ago, but I still remember.)

Happy Birthday Conor!

1 comment:

  1. Deedle
    Go with your gut feeling TALK to DR No Nickname; but if you want to change the team up do it....