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The After Effects of Breast Cancer Treatments

I was diagnosed in May of 2022 with a malignant tumor in my right breast

or Invasive Ductal Carcinoma in doctors’ terms. I underwent a

Lumpectomy, eight rounds of Chemotherapy and nineteen rounds of

radiation. In March of 2023, I was told I was in remission after much

testing to confirm the outcome. I was overjoyed to receive this news! I still

have medicine to take for a while and a surgery to do (partial

hysterectomy). But I thought the worst was behind me. Unfortunately the

after effects of treatment can be just as bad as the treatment itself. I have

developed fears that I never had before, such as dying earlier than

expected from the treatments, what the treatments did to my body and of

course what if the treatments didn’t get all the cancer. I have anxiety

around scans and doctor offices. I have developed lymphedema in my arm

where the lymph nodes were taken out. I have neuropathy in my legs and

fingertips. I have memory problems otherwise known as Chemo Brain. I

have struggled emotionally, physically and mentally because of the

treatments. I am in no way saying that I am not thankful for my treatments

that saved my life but I wish, hope and pray that one day cancer

treatments can be as effective without the after effects. This wish extends

to my three daughters and anyone facing breast cancer in the future.

-Crystal Watson, survivor



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