Going Under The Knife

December 19th, 2020

I had my surgery Tuesday. Going into it, I knew I was having a lumpectomy with removal of lymph nodes, but the extent of surgery would be determined during the procedure, which was nerve-racking to say the least. The hope was that the 8 rounds of chemo would have cleared all the cancer from the lymph nodes, in which case only the major nodes would be removed.
Unfortunately the frozen section showed persistent disease in one of them, so my surgeon had to go back and remove more. Overall I had 17 lymph nodes removed, and yesterday found out that 4 had cancer in them. The increased surgery meant getting a drain placed and making for more pain, but I survived and know I will be feeling better soon.
Once my body heals from surgery I will finish up with 5-6 weeks of radiation and will go on medication that will increase the likelihood of keeping me cancer free. It’s been a really long few months, but I know I am through the hardest parts and I am looking forward to lots of champagne to kiss 2020 goodbye.
Going through all this being a physician made me realize how scary being a patient can be. Having warm, caring and dedicated nurses and doctors makes all the difference in the world. I know that at the end of all this, I will continue to strive to be an even better doctor and remember how even little things we do and say make such a difference.
Once again, I can’t thank everyone enough for all the support over this time. Texts, cards, flowers, gifts… really truly overwhelming the love I feel from so many people. I am so fortunate to have so many people who love and care for me, friends, patients, my staff and my family, and this is the source of my strength to get up every day and know that I can and I will beat this.
Wishing you all happy holidays and a big toast to saying goodbye to 2020 and f#%> cancer.

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