A_Kusemark_pic“I am a 68 year old blessed woman. When I was diagnosed with stage 2 bilateral breast cancer in December 2012, I decided on having bilateral mastectomy to try to get as much of the cancer as possible. It was a process. After my surgery, my surgeon Dr. Michael Cross called me to tell me he got all the cancer! I had follow up visits and it was a relief to know my oncologist agreed and told me there was no need for radiation treat or chemotherapy! I do chemotherapy but it consists of one pill a day for the last 4 years, and no bad side effects. That’s why I consider myself blessed. With the help of my awesome family I’ve fought this cancer and kicked its butt! My advice is always get your mammogram every year and do your self exam. Keep your chin up!”

When and what age were you diagnosed?

I was diagnosed December, 2012. I was 64 years old at the time.

What stage were you diagnosed with?

Stage 2 Bilateral breast cancer.

Is there a family history of breast cancer?

“Yes, I have a strong family history as it is present on both sides.”

What is the one piece of advice you want to give others?

“Always get an annual mammogram. 3D mammograms are more accurate. In my case, ehe regular mamo showed it on one side, but the 3D showed both sides.”

What is something you recommend doing prior to surgery?

“Research your surgeons. Ask anyone who has had breast cancer surgery for recommendations. Search out a good oncology group as well. Your life is in their hands.”

Thank you to Ann for allowing us to share some of her journey. We are so thankful she has been cancer free for 6 years! Help us keep the research and progress going for breast cancer advancements buy bringing more awareness and funds to a great cause. We are excited to be celebrating our 5th Annual 2020 for the Cure event benefiting Susan G. Komen Ozarks Affiliate.