Patient stories

  1. Arizona Mom Recounts Battling Breast Cancer While Pregnant

    Joan Dymand-Hintz was in her early 40's when she became pregnant with her daughter. The happiness she and her husband Marc Hintz felt was short-lived. A week after learning she was pregnant, Joan, a Scottsdale, Arizona-based singer and mother of two sons, was diagnosed with breast cancer. Joan came to Mayo Clinic for a second [...]

  2. MaryEllen’s Journey: Hope Returns (Final Episode)

    The moment finally came. But it was an uneasy one at first. MaryEllen Sheppard was about to receive her last round of chemotherapy at Mayo Clinic, with friends and family by her side. But as her loved ones and her nurses cheered her on, a wave of emotion hit this mom with nerves of steel. [...]

  3. Irma Poznecki - Far from an “ordinary” mom

    Inspiration comes in many forms - for Irma Poznecki, a 45-year-old mother of three from Anthem, Ariz., it was brownies and cupcakes. In late 2009, Irma was diagnosed with breast cancer. The news came as an obvious shock to Irma who says she has always been active and healthy. And while she may describe herself [...]

  4. Sharon Francis

    Fortunately for Sharon, life had become one big headache

    Anyone who's ever met Sharon Francis knows her laugh. It's always present, like a trademark accessory. Even when she isn't able to laugh with life, she can laugh at it because against all odds, Sharon is a survivor. Consider her beginnings: When Sharon was only 20 and a single mother with three children, her own [...]

  5. Deborah Maina

    Patient Spreads Hope Beyond Borders

    Deborah Maina is on a mission to educate women about breast cancer. Growing up in the village of Embu in Kenya, where healthcare information was not common, Maina, 43, a breast cancer survivor, is committed to bring education to her home country. With positive attitude and determination, Maina has transformed her diagnosis into an opportunity [...]

  6. MaryEllen’s Journey: Searching For Genetic Clues (Episode 4)

    From the moment MaryEllen Sheppard was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer, she wondered how she developed cancer. Her ancestors, she said, tended to live long, healthy lives. And other than a cousin, she wasn’t aware of anyone else in her family who had breast cancer. As her battle against the disease began, MaryEllen’s thoughts [...]

  7. Breast Cancer Hits Home Three Times in One Year

    A mother and her three daughters – all diagnosed with breast cancer. Kathleen O’Brien shares her family’s history battling a disease which eventually took her mother’s life and now has struck three more times. Kathleen and her sisters, Angel and Brenda,  carry the BRCA gene which means they face a much higher risk of developing both [...]

  8. Rapid Breast Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment: Pam's Story

    Pam N from Michigan submitted her story via email this week, saying: "I am sharing my Mayo Clinic story with you in hopes that it will help other women who may be diagnosed with Inflammatory Breast Cancer. Inflammatory Breast Cancer is the most aggressive form of breast cancer. So a quick diagnosis and treatment is [...]

  9. Mary Rohrer

    Breast Cancer? Me? My Story

    Having never been touched by any kind of cancer in any generation of my family, it came as a shock to learn of my breast cancer diagnosis confirmed at Mayo Clinic January 2012. I felt I was going through seven stages of grief in trying to reconcile this new phenomenon happening within my body. Emotionally [...]

  10. Ardyth Carpenter

    My 30-Year Journey with Mayo

    My name is Ardyth Carpenter, and in 1982, I went to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, after experiencing a TIA. While there, Mayo’s work up discovered a malignancy in my right breast. I had no ill effects from the “mini-stroke” and the clinic was just a 75 mile drive from my home in Mankato but [...]

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Sept. 18, 2015