One evening when changing to lie on her stomach, Ms. Son suddenly felt a throbbing pain in her right chest, and went to be diagnosed with stage 2B breast cancer.
“Hearing the doctor’s announcement, I was very shocked, I never thought I had cancer at the age of 35”, teacher Le Thi Nga Son, shared at the ceremony Bright Tomorrow Fund Summary, Ministry of Health, December 25.
Up to now, Ms Son has been fighting for eight years with breast cancer, long enough for her to experience emotions from hopelessness to hope and victory. Thick hair, radiant face, currently no one thinks that Ms. Son is a cancer patient.
As a high school chemistry teacher in Dong Trieu district, Quang Ninh, she lives a healthy life, loves sports, badminton is her favorite subject. She also regularly checked her health, did not detect any abnormalities. So she was surprised when she discovered cancer, chemotherapy combined.
“My job is at maturity, my children are too young, I am only 35 years old, how many plans are ahead. I live a healthy life, why do I have cancer,” Ms. Son asked herself. .
Ms. Son said, since the news of the illness, the air in the house has always been “bringing the crowd, extremely heavy”. She decided to quit her job to begin her treatment journey. After surgery to remove the tumor, Ms. Son started chemotherapy.
The first chemical injection nose, Ms. Son found everything more horrible than expected. During the first week, she felt nauseous to smell whatever she ate, vomited, lost her taste completely. Every day, she just poured boiled vegetables with rice to hold out.
“I found myself worse than morning sickness”, Son recalled.
After 15 days of chemotherapy, her hair began to fall out. She even woke up and didn’t dare look down at her pillow. After that, she asked her husband to shave his head. Every day, in order to reduce her low self-esteem, she wears a wig exactly like her old hair so that people won’t notice it.
From the second nose, her body began to get used to the chemicals, but the side effects made her body dry and lifeless. At 6 months, she underwent 8 chemotherapy shots, then continued with 25 doses for 5 consecutive weeks.
“At that time, I was in a bad mood, many times wanted to give up because I could not stand it. Only when I talked to the sisters who were also fighting breast cancer in the Resilient Women Club, I gradually have more motivation to revive, “Ms. Son said.
Ms. Son adheres to the doctor’s treatment regimen, combined with gentle exercise, trying to eat lots of small meals so that her body has enough nutrition. Treatment results after the first 8 months were very good, the tumor was removed, no metastases were detected. Since then, Ms. Son has advised to re-examine and inject hormonal drugs. On the last visit a month ago, the doctor announced that all the readings were normal.
“Women should love their body more, do not be subjective, pay attention to periodic screening to detect breast cancer early”, Ms. Son reminded.
Ms. Son is one of more than 1,000 breast cancer patients living at the Resilient Women Club. Members who have been fighting breast cancer for the longest time are over 20 years, many others still live well after 10 years.
“We call ourselves warriors. The veteran will mentor the rookie to share with each other both physically and mentally, working side by side to fight the disease”, Ms. Son said.
In addition to clubs, breast cancer patients in Vietnam are also receiving great support from Cancer Foundation Bright Tomorrow. In the past 9 years, the Fund has supported treatment and donated gifts to more than 28,000 poor cancer patients with over 50 billion VND and is supporting more than 800 billion VND of medicine for patients. In the past year, more than 5,000 women in Hanoi, Vinh Phuc, Phu Tho, Bac Ninh … were screened for breast cancer free of charge.
Deputy Minister of Health Tran Van Thuan said that cancer is becoming a big burden in countries around the world, especially in poor countries and developing countries. Currently, there are more than 353,000 people living with cancer nationwide, of which over 70% are treated in a late stage. Many cases have to stop treatment because of inability to pay.