Pregnancy is as delicate as it is exciting. Every woman who finds out she’s pregnant, wants her pregnancy to go as smoothly as possible. Unfortunately for this mom, that was not the case. Rosy Lalnunsangi from Mizoram, was 5-month pregnant when she noticed something weird on her breast – a lump. She went to a nearly hospital where the doctors confirmed she had breast cancer. Even more so, they advised her to get an abortion!
Rosy had been given a choice to make – either treat her cancer or continue her pregnancy which could prove to be highly risky. A couple of gynecologists in Gurgaon strongly suggested she terminate her pregnancy but Rosy did not lose hope. Not just that, this 42-year-old got rid of her cancer through chemotherapy and breast cancer surgery. She even went on to deliver 2 healthy babies
Going from experiencing pregnancy to the diagnosis of cancer, Rosy says “I didn’t give up. We came to Delhi hoping that doctors here could save both me and my children. And they did”
An expert on breast cancer, Dr. Ramesh Sarin took on Rosy’s complicated case. She says –
“We constituted a multidisciplinary board comprising a medical oncologist, a radio oncologist, a surgical oncologist, gynaecologists and foetal medicine specialists to decide whether to take up this case or not. All available medical literature was studied to learn how to manage such patients. Finally , the board decided that it was possible to treat breast cancer during pregnancy “
Rosy’s tumor was small in size and was removed via sentinel node biopsy. Following which she was treated with chemotherapy medicines safe for the fetus. A team of dedicated doctors decided to deliver the babies at the end of 36 weeks via c-section. A senior gynaecologist, Dr. Shakti Bhan Khanna said that in such cases, there is no requirement to abort the fetus. She further explained how most chemotherapy drugs can be given to the patients in the first and second trimester while radiation can be given after delivery. Plus, the risk of cancer being passed to the feotus from the mother is rare.
So, how exactly is breast cancer diagnosed?
Different types of imaging tests are conducted to provide images of breast tissue. These include:
Mammogram – A mammogram forms part of regular Breast cancer screening too. It is basically an x-ray of the breast tissue, creating images taken from different angles. A diagnostic mammogram is used to create images of specific breast tissue areas if a normal screening mammogram gives abnormal results.
Ultrasound of the Breast – Breast ultrasound or sonography creates digital images of breast tissue using sound waves. It is commonly used to scan a particular area of breast tissue that shows abnormal result in a mammogram. It can also differentiate between a solid mass and cyst, and even benign and malignant tumors.
Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) – Together with mammograms, MRI is used in regular screening in high-risk women. It is also used to determine the actual size and location of the breast tumor.
Ductogram – Also called galactogram, this test injects a contrast dye into the nipple duct to create its outline. This shows up as an x-ray image along with any solid tumor mass.
Read a detailed article on Diagnosis of Breast Cancer.
image source: http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/mother-delivers-twins-despite-having-breast-cancer/1/617329.html