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Breast Patient Participates in Marketing Campaign

Breast Patient Participates in Marketing Campaign

In June, we brought you the stories of two men who participated in our newest marketing campaign, which focuses on patients’ power to take charge of their treatment choices. In our final installment of the series, we’ll introduce you to a third proton therapy graduate. Han is a young mother of two girls, who discovered a lump in her breast while she was pregnant. She was subsequently diagnosed not just with node-positive breast cancer, but with Type 1 diabetes. As she contemplated her options, Han thought about her daughters, Emma, 6, and Ella, just 6 months. She wanted to choose the treatment that gave her the best chance of seeing them both grow up, go to college, start their careers, and begin families of their own. With that in mind, Han’s radiation oncologist recommended proton therapy— a highly targeted form of radiation therapy with the goal of reducing damage to nearby healthy tissue. Since the tumor was in her left breast, this nearby tissue included her heart and lungs.

“Han was a good candidate for proton therapy because she had disease that required complex treatment and that would have been very challenging to treat with conventional therapy using X-rays. It involved the contralateral axilla and the mediastinum. Her outside radiation oncologist referred her for protons because of this,” says Dr. L. Christine Fang, who was Han’s radiation oncologist at the Center. “Han was a complete delight to treat! I was most impressed by her tenacity. She had a baby at home, but still showed up for treatment every day with a great attitude!”

Han was very excited to talk about her experience of being treated at the Center: “I am a member of a breast cancer support group on Facebook. Every day, people share their stories and treatment experiences. Happy, sad, upset, or exciting, for each of those emotional moments you know people are there for you. We encourage each other and get inspired by each other. That’s the reason I chose to participate in this advertising campaign. I want to do something to cheer on other cancer patients, to let them know not to be afraid, they’ve got this. We have cancer, but we are survivors. We are warriors.”

Similar to Kenny’s and Garth’s experiences, her involvement included a photo shoot and a video session. Han felt a bit nervous about it all – posing in front of the camera and speaking for video without messing it up. She says: “It was wonderful to have a hair and makeup person. It’s always nice when someone can do the job of making you look good for the camera. And Scott is such a great photographer! I really love how my photos turned out.”

Han is now cancer-free and embracing every second of her life. Prior to her cancer diagnosis, she enjoyed solo workouts such as running, but now she enjoys being part of her local YMCA Zumba community because it’s brought joy and new friendships into her life. She’s back at work as an accountant, and spending time with her girls. Thanks to her decision to pursue proton therapy, Han is optimistic she’ll see her daughters grow up and achieve all of their dreams.

You’ll find Han’s ads on social media and you can read her full story here.