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Triple-negative breast cancer survivor: Looking back

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At 37 years old, a stage 3 triple-negative breast cancer diagnosis is tough to swallow. If you're a working mother of twin boys, one of them with special needs, a triple-negative breast cancer diagnosis can be even more daunting.


So, for Bree Sandlin, coming to MD Anderson for her triple-negative breast cancer treatment was the only choice there ever was.


Bree's triple-negative breast cancer treatment

"When I first arrived at MD Anderson to meet with my oncologist, I had pages of notes and questions," Bree recalls. "My doctor took the time to go through each one and laid out the plan for me. She did an amazing job leaving me with a feeling of hope, optimism and encouragement for the future."


Bree's plan consisted of six months of chemotherapy, followed by a bilateral mastectomy, and ended with six weeks of radiation therapy. When doctors removed the tumor during surgery, they found no trace of cancer.


A new outlook on life

Now 38, Bree calls herself a survivor, having been in remission with no sign of triple-negative breast cancer since April 2013.

"Being in remission gives you a whole new outlook on life," Bree says. "I read a statistic after I was diagnosed that 90% of cancer survivors look back on their cancer experience positively. And it's true. Cancer gave me a new lease on life and helped me prioritize how important my life and my family are. In the end, it just makes me a happier person."


To celebrate being cancer-free, Bree and her husband will climb Mount Kilimanjaro on the one-year anniversary of finding out that she was in remission.


Watch Bree talk about her hopes for the future of cancer research and treatment:

 

Triple-negative breast cancer is one of the cancers MD Anderson is focusing on as part of our Moon Shots Program to dramatically reduce cancer deaths. Learn more about our Breast and Ovarian Moon Shot.

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