Many of you know Lisa Bovino as classmate from Burnt Hills, a classmate/coworker from The College of Saint Rose or, as a coworker from Empire State College. Her story is shared below. The goal is set at $10,000 (updated from $4,000) but the expenses are anticipated to be much higher with housing, meals, copays, parking, gas, etc for a 6 week time frame and beyond. Any funds that exceed the goal will be used for past and future medical bills.
Please contribute what you can, anything is appreciated.
Thank you - Kim Durant
Diagnosis Summary: After feeling some discomfort in my left breast for a couple days my primary physician sent me to have my first mammogram (4/12/17). The technicians didn’t like what they saw in the mammogram and ultrasound images so they had a doctor review them and determined that I needed a biopsy immediately, which was done the same day. Two days later, April 14, 2017, I received the phone call that I had Breast Cancer (invasive ductal carcinoma). Further testing over the next couple days would also reveal that the cancer had spread to at least 2 lymph nodes. Between May and October I underwent chemotherapy treatment and on November 29, 2017 I had a bi-lateral mastectomy and axillary dissection of the lymph nodes under my left arm.
Surgical pathology results determined that I am stage 3, triple negative, with grade 3 cancer cells (indicating they are very aggressive and multiply quickly). They also showed that the chemotherapy didn’t have a significant impact on my tumors as the breast tumor only shrunk slightly and there was cancerous tumors identified in 4 of the 12 lymph nodes removed. Given my pathology results and the specifics of my cancer I’ve been told that there is a 50% or more chance that my cancer will spread (indicating stage 4 disease which is terminal) in my lifetime. Obviously, this isn’t ideal and led me and my medical team to research clinical trials available.
I’m starting a clinical trial on Monday, January 28, 2018 at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. The clinical trial is combining radiation therapy with IV chemotherapy (cisplatin). I will receive daily (M-F) radiation for 28 sessions and weekly chemo infusions. The “hypothesis” of the study is that the chemo will attack any “floating” cancer cells that remain around the tumor sites after the tumors were removed. The cancer cells will be damaged by the chemo and then when hit with the radiation they will be more likely to die. Since this is a trial, it requires that I do all of the treatment at Dana Farber…so I’ll be living in Boston for the next 6ish weeks. I’m not excited at being so far away from my medical team, my family & friends and my support network. But at this point I feel as though I need to throw everything possible at this cancer.
While in Boston I plan on doing further research to see if there are any other clinical trials being done. There is an immunotherapy trial at Dana Farber that I was hoping to participate in after the radiation/chemo trial ended, but unfortunately my blood does not contain the specific protein required for that study. Minimally, once done with the radiation/chemo trail in Boston I’ll come home and start taking the chemo pill Xeloda for about 6months.
That’s the down and dirty summary.Thank you all for your friendship, encouragement and support. I am so grateful for the huge ARMY standing behind me on this journey!!!!
Love and hugs,
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