Breast prosthesis

Friday, December 26, 2008

I have got to ask other Breast Cancer women. How often do you wear your prosthesis? Why do they even make nightgowns and PJ's with a pocket for the prosthesis?

Even if you do wear a prosthesis during the day what is the point in sleeping with it/them?

I bought a good quality set of the prosthesis. In the year and a half I had no boobs I only wore the prosthesis three times. They were heavy and uncomfortable to say the least. And lets not forget hot.

There has got to be women out there like myself that choose not to wear the fake boobs. I am all for looking your best during chemo and the other treatments, but I think wearing the prosthesis is like wearing a girdle or corset, torturous.

As we Baby Boomer, and for some our daughters, are facing breast cancer we need clothing that is functional, stylish, feminine and comfortable. Confident Clothing Company has created a line of clothing that fits into today's active lifestyle.

In addition to being great looking Confident Clothing Company's designs are especially versatile, so that you get more bang for your buck. In today's economy that is a necessity. The clothing can be dressed up for an evening out, it can be worn during exercise or just going about your daily activities.

The main reason I designed the Cool Chemo line of clothing was to provide a functional and feminine solution to what to wear immediately after surgery, during chemo and or radiation and after reconstructive surgery.

Being a personal trainer and trying to maintain my phyiscal fitness during my cancer experience I discovered immediately that the prosthesis and wigs were not for me. The only clothing that showed up when I searched the internet for breast cancer clothing was all the pink ribbon stuff. So, I could find clothing to support the breast cancer cause, but not for the women that actually had cancer. How crazy is that!

I would really like feedback from you, as to if you wore the prosthesis or not. Please forward this to other women that you know are dealing or have dealt with this issue and have them also email me at to share insights about what you wore and what you felt was missing.


Kathy Adams

Confident Clothing Company

Thank You

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I will update this blog from time to time to let everyone who finds it know how I'm doing. For now though I'd like to close my active treatment blog reports by saying "thank you".

First, I thank my wife Nancy for putting up with "Cancer Dan". She successfully went through breast cancer treatment 4 years ago. Together we're now "two-time cancer ass kickers".

Second, I thank my kids, family and friends for giving me all of 10-seconds of sympathy and then going back to treating me like a normal person (who has no hair and gray skin.)

Third, I thank all the medical professionals, care takers and even the insurance company. I know it's your job but you all gave me much more than I'm sure you were compensated for. You cared about me. I noticed and appreciated that very much.

Fourth, I thank everyone who has walked the cancer path in front of me. Thanks for publishing your treatment blogs. I hope those of you who come down the cancer path behind me find my blog as helpful as the blogs I found and read when I first discovered I had cancer.

Last (but not least), I thank God. Prayer and reflection got me through this ordeal. When things seemed most bleak I would simply think about my favorite line of scripture from Jesus' "Sermon on the Mount", "Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?" Matthew 6:26.

I'm Cured?

My primary oncologist says, "You're cured!" I guess that's the deal with Hodgkin's. Like testicular cancer & childhood leukemia, Hodgkin's is one of the three "curable" cancers.

My radiation oncologist says, "I use the 'cured' word pretty cautiously". It doesn't really matter to me - I'm just glad I'm no longer in active treatment. Treatment is a huge grind on your time and while you're not being treated you're feeling tired and/or "like crap" all the time.

The elderly "church ladies" are thrilled at my recovery. (Like it or not, when the church ladies discover you're "afflicted" they add you to their official daily prayer requests and you become part of their "prayer job". ) When they ask me on Sundays how I'm doing I assure them that I am in fact cured (and thankful and appreciative). One in particular, Irene, delights in taking me by the arm and introducing me to others as a "walking miracle". She's right.

Whether I "stay cured" for forty years or just forty weeks is not up to me. What's up to me is to live my life now like it will be both.

Radiation Done!

The 17 daily radiation treatments are over - and in this season of Thanksgiving, I am. Depending on who you ask, for all practical purposes, I'm cured.

Compared to chemo, the radiation treatments were quite anti-climatic. With each of the eight bi-monthly chemo treatments I got get four hours of people feeling sorry and being nice to me. With chemo it's two quick, 10-second zaps after 15-minutes of waiting for my turn on the machine.

The biggest difference between chemo & radiation is the setup before the first treatment. With chemo there's no setup. With radiation it seemed like a month of setup as I had to meet with a radiation oncologist. Then I had to get measured and fitted to a Styrofoam form to hold me still while being radiated. Then I had to go through a trial zapping. It just seemed to go on and on before my first actual radiation.

I've posted a stock web photo of what the machine looks like. The technicians position the machine above you using lasers lining up to little tattoo dots they put on your chest and then zap you from above. The whole machine then rotates around and then you get zapped from below. All the while you're lying on a Styrofoam form on a table.

The worse part of the treatment is the skin area that gets radiated (for me it was the upper left quadrant of my chest & back) gets pretty crusty for about two or three weeks after the treatment is over. (Kind of like a party favor!)

The people at the radiation treatment center were very nice though from the technicians, to the nurse and my radiation oncologist, Dr. Washington. They gave me a nice completion certificate after my last treatment.