Dolores' Story

"My name is Dolores and this is my Survivor Story. I get a mammogram every year. That’s one of the great things about working at Wilson-they provide it as part of our annual bloodwork and wellness program. I have “dense breast tissue," which means interpreting my mammograms can be more difficult. About 10 years ago, they detected a suspicious spot. I had a biopsy done, and it was benign.

I had my mammogram in July 2012 as usual; no problems detected. But on New Year’s Eve day, as I was drying off after my shower, I noticed that my right breast seemed to be shaped differently than my left. I had a bad feeling about this. I made an appointment with my doctor, and after a mammogram and biopsy, it was confirmed that I had invasive ductal breast carcinoma and it was already in one of my lymph nodes....I had cancer.

After further testing (MRI’s, PET scans), it was decided that my course of treatment would be 3 months of chemo (to shrink the tumor, which was quite large), followed by a lumpectomy or mastectomy, 3 more months of chemo, and finally 6 weeks of radiation. The first course of chemo did not shrink the tumor, but because of its location and size, I decided a total mastectomy.

It was a long year, but I had my final radiation treatment January 2014. My hair grew back, my life returned to “normal”, and I have been cancer free now for 4 years. My family, friends, and co-workers were (and continue to be!) so supportive through it all. I thank God for them every day, and pray that everyone would be so blessed.

I encourage every woman to get their mammogram regularly, but also to be aware of and know your body. Mammograms don’t replace regular self-exams."

Dolores is a Registered Dietitian and Diabetes Educator for Wilson Health.