Not having Chemo, Rad, Med

Hi, I recently had a 6mm grade 3 ductal carcinoma removed. Am Her2 positive (3) Clear around surrounding tissue and clear in lymph nodes. V lucky to catch early.
Treatment plan is chemo, rads, and meds but I am likely to decline all three - seeing Oncologist tmw for initial discussion. But I’m 62 and favour quality of life over life on medication as saw what did to parents.
I’ve seen research Prof Seyfried on benefits of low carb intermittent fasting diet to starve any cancer cells…
I will not rush into decision but seek the wisdom of you all, especially anyone who has done similar. Will be asking oncologist the predict nhs stats and any other test to assess likely hood of reoccurring…but would appreciate your advice….

Hi welcome to the forum , may be worth considering each treatment and impact individually before you make a decision rather than as a job lot as the impact is very different . Everyone’s cancer and personal circumstances are different you need to make a decision that you are happy with based on your own very individual situation. Hopefully the oncologist will be able to give you some statistics to help. Maybe also post in the Recently diagnosed with breast cancer section the Chemotherapy section and maybe also Hormone therapy section to get info about all the treatments you may be offered . Best wishes Jill

Dear Jill, I would endorse the advice to take this one step at a time. I am 66 years old with a similar diagnosis 25mm Idc e+ and her2+ I also value quality over quantity of life. I had 4 cycles of EC chemo but have refused the paclitaxel as I am a musician and cannot risk peripheral neuropathy. My intuition told me not to subject my body to any more poison. I made this decision after much thought, research, and discussion with the oncologist and counsellors. As a result I have been refused phesgo and been referred for surgery. My gut feeling is to request a mastectomy because I dont want radiotherapy but I need to be given the results of my post chemo MRI first and ask my three pages of questions to the surgeon. Then I will have more information with which to make an informed decision. I started out not wanting any treatment at all. The most important thing is to be comfortable and at peace with whatever decision you take. It is your body and you are in control. I found reading the book called Radical Remission very helpful. It includes a chapter about trusting your intuition. Please send me a private message if you wish. Sending you my very best wishes from Tulip x

1 Like

Dear cath1, with apologies to both you and Jill my earlier post should have of course been addressed to yourself. Please forgive me!
I would like to add that it is the HER2 positivity that we need to be especially mindful of as these cancers are more aggressive and prone to spreading. This was why I had the first set of chemotherapy but I promised my body that I wouldn’t give it anymore. I too pay attention to my diet but only in as far as eating healthily to give my body everything it needs to function as well as possible. I also have type 1 diabetes so cannot consider any ‘special’ diets. I hope you are recovering well from your surgery and that is good news that the tumour was small and was removed with clear margins with no lymph node involvement. Unfortunately mine is larger, still in me, and likely to have developed its own blood supply. The Predict tool is just a tool and can only tell you so much. It is based on data from all ages and all cancer types so it is useful input data for decision making but should not be the only input to consider. I have found it difficult to find others like yourself who are thinking of refusing treatment so it is good to know that we are not alone! I have found talking through my thoughts and decision making with nurses on the Macmillan helpline, the Breast Cancer Now helpline, and the counsellor at my local cancer support centre immensely helpful and would encourage you to do the same if you have not done so already. Do let me know how you are getting on. I am rooting for you. Love Tulip x

Dear Tulip & Jill, thank you for sharing your situations, I have found great strength and support from people willing to do so, thank you.

I saw my oncologist and using nhs predict and with treatment 22% more patients with us than without it. Which feels a big factor to consider. I should say I had to ask for the calculation, he said, ah good question…. And did the input with me there… so important to ask questions!

He then said the form of chemo offered was gentler. Over 12 weeks to enable herceptin to work. This would later be followed with radiation and medication. I will be improving my diet and fitness too!

I’m now weighing it all up and going back in two weeks but likely to take the treatment. What swayed me was my amazing cancer nurse who afterwards shared some experiences and talked it all through with such empathy and kindness.

I will phone the helplines as suggested and let you know how I got on. For me reminds us of the value of human kindness, and importance of asking lots of questions.

Thank you x