My name is April Bhattacharya and I’ve created this blog to keep family and friends updated with my journey. I hope that others out there that are facing these same decisions find my blog encouraging and informative.
After losing multiple women in my family, including my mother, to breast cancer, I chose to have genetic testing. I found out in March 2010 that I tested positive for the BRCA2 mutation. This does not mean it causes breast or ovarian cancer, but it leads to an increased risk for its development. I have an 85% lifetime risk of breast cancer and a 40% lifetime risk of ovarian cancer. The general population’s lifetime risk for breast cancer is about 12% and less than 2% for ovarian cancer.
After doing much research, discussing things with my husband, talking with doctors and genetic counselors, I came to the conclusion that a prophylactic (preventative) bilateral mastectomy (removal of both breasts) and reconstruction would be my personal best decision. By having this surgery I reduce my risk of getting breast cancer by 90%. I have also taken on a vegan diet. At 23 years old, I am empowered to take steps to prevent breast and/or ovarian cancer from taking my life early. I am grateful to be a woman with options that could change the future of my family.
Friday, December 10, 2010
Bye Bye Boobies
I've just finished laundry, wrapping Christmas gifts, and preparing the house for me to come home to after surgery. The last few days have been crazy busy. I feel like there is so much to do. Sameer has been so awesome and helpful! I am very thankful for him.
I went to the hospital today for all the pre-op appointments and everything went well. I report at 6am Friday for surgery. That's in 2 hours! I can't believe I haven't got to sleep yet, but I'm glad I got to finish everything I wanted to at the house.
They said surgery will begin about 7 or 7:30am. Please continue to keep me in your prayers. I'm just trying to keep my mind focused on the fact that this is a great thing I'm doing. I'm reducing my risk so greatly of ever being diagnosed with breast cancer. Having to go through this surgery and reconstruction has to be better than me potentially going through cancer treatment later in life.
I have a weak stomach and I'm dreading the iv, drains and everything. But I know this is for the better and I'm grateful for this opportunity.