Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Yesterday, Shannon and I drove up to McKay Dee Hospital in Ogden. There is a radiologist there who does a procedure called Sonocine or Automated Whole Breast Ultrasound. I don't know the history of the Sonocine, except for the fact that it is not (yet) routinely used and insurance does not (yet) pay for it. I do know that my surgeon at Huntsman is a big believer in using this procedure to screen for and detect early breast cancer. Especially for women in my situation (positive pathology for mammary carcinoma and negative mammogram and MRI).

I was admittedly a little grumpy during the 45 minute car drive. I think I have had more doctor appointments in the past few weeks than my entire life put together. I am pretty sick of it, and I get even grumpier thinking of all of the appointments I have to look forward to.

Once we arrived at McKay Dee, I checked in for my appointment via telephone. They were sure to get my credit card number before the procedure :) Then I was whisked back to the Sonocine room where I got to wear another flattering top. I don't see why hospitals can't have gowns/robes that are a little less dorky? Anyhow, it made me laugh.

Way too happy while modeling a hot open buttoned hospital shirt

After the procedure I was taken back to Dr. Babcock's (Radiologist) imaging room. It was amazing. The room was full of monitors and she pulled up every image from every procedure that I have undergone up to this point. This includes two mammograms, an ultrasound guided core biopsy, an ultrasound guided axillary biopsy, MRI and now the Sonocine!

There was a lot of radiology going on in that room to say the least. Dr. Babcock was phenomenal. She reviewed the Sonocine results with me and showed me the tumor that she was able to see. This was great news. Finally a screening tool to help detect any future cancers. Unfortunately, she also saw another small tumor that was hiding underneath the one we already knew about. The tumor that we already knew about is about 1.2 cm in size. This second tumor is about half the size and there is no way to feel it. Fortunately, the Sonocine detected it and my lumpectomy margins can be adjusted appropriately. I am now a huge advocate for the Sonocine procedure and encourage insurance companies to pay for them:)

The other interesting piece of information that I gained from this consultation was that Dr. Babcok did not necessarily think my MRI was negative. She pointed out one slice that showed my tumor. She did say that it didn't "light up" as most malignant tumors do, however she could clearly see it. This was incredibly reassuring to me because I no longer need to be hung up on the negative MRI. I can now confidently go into Friday's lumpectomy surgery and have (once again) requested that the sentinel lymph node biopsy be done at this time as well.

What does this mean? Well, I am having surgery this Friday. Hopefully they get clean margins and it will be my only surgery. They will also test my lymph nodes for any spread of cancer. Hopefully this test comes back negative. If the lymph nodes are negative they will do what is called an Oncotype Dx test on the tumor. If this comes back with a low risk of reoccurrence I may not need chemo. I will definitely need radiation. This kind of puts me back to where I was a few weeks ago, however now I have the information to move forward confidently.

My workout goals for the week are a rest day today, weights tomorrow, and one last ride Thursday before surgery. Who says training stops when you have cancer?

And finally, I couldn't resist posting a picture of my puppy. He spends most of his time upside down. Today, while I was at work he also ate the handouts from puppy school. Coincidence...I think not. He's quite smart.


  1. Great news! Hopefully, it continues.

  2. Yay for boobie ultrasounds!!!! You're amazing for staying so positive through all this. We're still sending positive energy your way and keeping you in our daily prayers.
    P.S Dizzy is the cutest thing ever. Maybe even cuter than Layla.
    PPS. You look superb in that hospital gown! :)

  3. Wonderful, Jen. Will be thinking of you Friday.

  4. love that cute puppy pose. mine does the same except in "my" bed not hers....

  5. Yay for Sonocine! We'll be thnking about you on Friday...for negative nodes and a favorable assay!

  6. Good luck to you! I just found your blog a few days ago and work in Radiology. I will check back on you! Sending you good thoughts from Virginia!

  7. Good luck tomorrow. Kday, Layla, Kashi, and I are all wishing you well tomorrow.