|She was 36 years old. Her children were 15
and 17 years old. The lump may have been there for a while -- it was quite large.
pathology indicated that it was invasive ductal carcinoma with 19
nodes fully involved. She was in the hospital for a week. At the time, the
Halsted mastectomy was the norm and resulted in a particularly disfiguring scar. Judy
sought a different surgeon who was willing to work with her to design a surgical procedure
and incision that would fit her lifestyle more comfortably. (Today's modified radical
mastectomy leaves a relatively small scar.) She returned to work after 5 weeks.
She received weekly chemotherapy treatments
(Cytoxan, Methatrexate, and 5FU) for a year. She worked throughout the
After 19 years of remission Judy had a recurrence
in her remaining breast. She had a second modified radical mastectomy
and recently completed a five-year treatment cycle with tamoxifen.
After the first year on tamoxifen Judy experienced vaginal
bleeding and contacted her gynecologist and oncologist. Biopsies showed that she
had developed uterine cancer which was treated surgically.
In 1998 Judy was inducted into the Wall of Hope,
a traveling pictorial display honoring breast cancer survivors.
In response to a nationwide search Judy was appointed, in
2000, to the American Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) Consumer Advisory Panel.
Judy works regularly with all media to provide information,
resources, and support to other cancer patients, their families and friends. She is seen
on TV and in the print media. She is a published columnist under the pen name "Judy
Bear" and writes a bi-weekly column of cancer information and commentary, entitled
She is a long-term cancer survivor (almost
30 years), founder
and webmaster of Cancer Survivors On Line, and works with many cancer
support groups online and off.