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Breast Cancer Patient Stories

Kat Kramer

Breast Cancer

Kat Kramer

Breast Cancer

When I was growing up in Philadelphia’s Olney-Feltonville neighborhood, my grandmother made sure I knew how to run a household. She taught all of her grandchildren how to do essential household tasks, like sewing and cooking. I always looked forward to the day when I’d get to follow in her footsteps and pass these skills along to my son, Alex.

But when I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015 at age 43, I found myself worried about whether I would be able to carry on family traditions like this.

Tiffany Mannino Dillon

Breast Cancer

Tiffany Mannino Dillon

Breast Cancer

I remember the day I was diagnosed so clearly. December 16, 2009. 

Toula Aris

Breast Cancer

Toula Aris

Breast Cancer

As a cancer survivor of over 20 years and as a mother who lost a daughter to cancer, I can say with certainty that cancer does not discriminate. Prior to my diagnosis, there was no family history of cancer and I always lived a healthy lifestyle, yet this disease affected me. A diagnosis can sneak up on anyone, regardless of how healthy they appear.

Shelby Hurley

Breast Cancer

Shelby Hurley

Breast Cancer

I remember lying on the operating table before surgery, worrying about what was going to happen next. My breast was trying to kill me but it had still been difficult to make the decision to undergo a mastectomy.

Alison Kovalchik

Breast Cancer

Alison Kovalchik

Breast Cancer

In 2013, Alison Kovalchik learned she carried the BRCA1 mutation that increases the risk for developing breast cancer. Because she already had a number of other health issues, she was very worried about her options for preventive treatment. Upon the recommendation of her doctor, Alison sought answers from a specialist at Fox Chase Cancer Center, where she later had preventive surgery. She was assigned to a team of physicians from several different departments who all worked together to form an individualized treatment plan to ensure the best outcome. "Even though Fox Chase is a cancer center, its staff considers the patient as a whole person, which is something I hadn’t encountered elsewhere, and, to me, it is a true miracle," Alison said. "Fox Chase Cancer Center’s doctors worked as a team to treat me...I trust my team at Fox Chase. My doctors gave me my life back—in all ways, not only with the BRCA mutation risk. I know I’m in the best hands for my care."

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