Tuesday, May 2, 2006

Genetic Tendancies -- and needs for prayer

I'm sorry for not posting, but things have been hectic.

Milady's niece has breast cancer. It is Stage 1, and highly differentiated, so her doctors believe that it hasn't hit her lymph nodes yet, and that she can avoid chemotherapy. (The one doctor who did the core biopsy thinks he got the entire tumor when he did the biopsy, but of course couldn't promise it.)

Milady is consulting with a geneticist at the University of Kentucky, and the geneticist is certain that Milady's family is carrying one or more genetic markers for breast cancer. The geneticist is going to test Milady and her niece both, to identify which marker is in play, and whether Milady is now carrying the gene herself.

Our current prayer is that Milady's niece has an easily identified marker, and that Milady doesn't carry it. That means Milady's chances of breast cancer fall back to the same as the general population.

If Milady has the marker too, then plan B is a bilateral masectomy and Tamoxifen for a year or two until she is ready to do a full hysterectomy. She is prepared for that, too.

The worry starts if they can't identify a gene marker in Milady's niece or Milady. Then Milady has to consider having the masectomy and hysterectomy anyway, since the geneticists are 60-80% certain that this cancer is genetic. She just doesn't get that certainty of knowing she HAD to have the surgeries.

Milady's niece has been scheduled for surgery on Friday for a bilateral masectomy, so please pray for her and her doctors. Also, pray that Milady is not carrying the gene markers, and for the geneticists, that they will get an accurate diagnosis.

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