Meet Francine Barton Del Giacco - A Breast Cancer Survivor!
(click photo to hear of her story!)
November of 2015 did not welcome Francine with great news. She was diagnosed with Ductal Carcinoma in Situ (DCIS), the most common type of breast cancer. She was close to missing it as her prior recommendations had been to get screened every 2 years. Upon her most recent doctor's visit, her doctor advised her to go ahead and get checked because he's been seeing more women her age get diagnosed. It's been 15 months since her last screening... who knows how things would have turned out had she waited another 9 months!
She had a genetic testing called DCIS Oncotype test which indicates the likelihood you may benefit from chemotherapy as well as chances of recurrence. Francine scored 70 out of 100 and her oncologist recommended having a mastectomy. By January 2016, she had a double mastectomy and first reconstructive surgery in August of 2016, and needed reconstruction revision surgery in April of 2017! As many women can attest, it's a lot to go through both physically and emotionally in such a short time frame.
Francine's biggest take aways from her experiences:
1. Get screened yearly! Early detection helped Francine avoid chemo and radiation therapy after her mastectomy
2. Do your own research! There's so much information out there that your doctor alone may not go over all possible complications you may incur. Francine experienced Capsular Contracture (hypertrophic scarring around implants) and implant migration after her reconstruction procedure. A very painful remedy that she had no idea was a possible complication.
3. Talk to other women! Allow others to help educate you on options, solutions, and share emotional assistance that even your own family can't quite provide.