The C Word

Lately I have been fortunate enough or unfortunate enough to have quite a few breast cancer patients who have been recently diagnosed.  I am fortunate because I have so much compassion for women facing this incredibly scarifying condition and I have so much information to provide.  Unfortunate enough because more and more women are being faced with this diagnosis, the C word.

But the reason I feel the need to write about this is because of the common approach that I am seeing in every single diagnosis - an almost blinding rapidity to rush through treatment.  From diagnosis to the surgical suite is becoming a matter of days and at most weeks.  Prior to it is the multiple visit requirement for additional tests, pre-surgical discussions, and many other honestly, terrifying aspects of this dreaded disease.

I want to stand here and say to both oncologists that are diagnosing women and the women receiving the diagnosis, STOP!!!  Just take a moment and take a breath.  Close your eyes and dispel the fear that has immediately taken hold of your heart, your head and your loved ones.  I think it is vitally important that oncologists understand what they are actually delivering to a woman when they diagnose her with the C word.  They are creating panic, fear and the loss of reason in one incredibly horrifying instant.  You cannot then expect a women to simply subject herself to immediate painful, terrifying and uncertain treatments within days or a week.

I honestly believe and have seen, that women need time.  They need time to process what this means, they need time to commit themselves to their treatment and they need time to understand their future, now that the C word has interfered with their plans.  Rushing someone through treatment may make sense when all you are considering is the condition, but it doesn't make sense when you consider these concerns which I have seen over and over in the women that come to me broken and scared to death...

  • This condition means that all future plans have to be rearranged or altered, including their job, their schedule, any travel arrangements or any responsibilities that they have, such as caring for an elderly parent.
  • They have to make arrangements for their own care through the treatment and once they are home, which requires adding another person(s) into the plan.
  • They have to figure out how they will financially manage since they will not be able to fully work as they have before.
  • They have to understand how much time will be needed for recovery, honestly!
  • They have to know what complications can and often do occur and be prepared for them.
  • They have to know in their heart of hearts that the treatment being recommended is in their best individual interest.  It is the very best course of action for them to take and they are committed to it fully.
  • They have to spend some time coming to terms with this diagnosis and reducing the anxiety and the fear.  Clinical studies have shown that undergoing any serious treatment or surgery while in chronic Sympathetic Dominance inhibits healing, immunity and recovery.  It also significantly increases pain sensations, emotional distress and post-treatment depression.

So to give some time, 2-4 weeks for a woman to address each of these issues is essential for a positive outcome to conventional treatment.  Additionally it is important for women to have access to natural medicinal options to support their treatment.  There are incredible formulas that do not interfere with any conventional treatment, that will reduce nausea, prevent hair loss, speed recovery time and inhibit skin damage.  Why are women not made aware of these options?

In fact, why does conventional medicine put all their time, money and effort into treatment and nothing into recovery?  Why is it good medical practice to discharge a woman from the hospital and then cross your fingers that she can recover and knows how to help her body recover?

It's time for preparation and recovery to become as important as the treatment itself.  Especially when a woman hears the C word ...

Karen Clickner