Thursday, November 02, 2006
Um, No Mamm.
Fall, a time for enjoying the crisp air, giving thanks, and enjoying a veritable smorgasbord of medical professionals. While the biopsy results await me tomorrow, I did see my new gynecologist. Much to my appreciation, this father-daughter ob-gyn practice is not a happy baby office. I did not see one issue of Parenting magazine nor did I witness one pregnant woman mindlessly caressing her protruding belly. Don’t get me wrong, I love the miracle of life and appreciate the beauty of pregnant woman. I just don’t love to be tossed in the middle of it all when I am there to examine the reasons why I will never be part of that elite group.

The office was fine; the doctor was okay. I may not necessarily make a lifetime connection with this doctor, but it works for now. I was a little disappointed with the conversation during the breast exam portion.

“So, when was your last mammogram?” the doctor asked.

“In 2004 just prior to the cancer diagnosis,” I replied.

“You haven’t had another one since?” she stated in disbelief.

“No, as you can see, I no longer need them.”

“You don’t?” she said, half asking and half questioning my personal care choices, and in a somewhat accusatory tone.

There was no mistaking the scars and the implants. How could a gynecologist not know that you don’t need a mammogram after a bilateral mastectomy? Given the number of women who have breast cancer and the number of women who have prophylactic mastectomies for genetic concerns, I would assume that a practicing gynecologist might know this. I simply looked at her while she quickly examined me and said,

“Uh, no. You see, I have no mamms to gram.”

A hush fell over the room. Within moments I was off the table and picking up a referral for a pelvic ultrasound and follow-up appointment. The fun times just keeps on rolling.
Written by Jeannette Vagnozzi
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Name: Jeannette
Location: Southern California, USA

This is my story about being diagnosed with breast cancer at age 39. I thought I was out of the woods, but four years late it came back. This is my quest to be a two-time survivor.

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