Story of Hope: UAE Resident Shares the Importance of Early Detection this Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Thanks to early diagnosis, Patricia - a Mathematics teacher working in Al Ain – has been able to overcome breast cancer
Abu Dhabi, 17 October 2021: Abu Dhabi Health Services Company (SEHA), the UAE’s largest healthcare network, has shared the inspirational breast cancer survival story of a patient named, Patricia, to urge women in Abu Dhabi to get checked this Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
'In late 2019, I felt a pain in my left breast but I just thought this was normal. However, when doing a self-check, I could feel a painful abnormal lump. It was constantly on my mind, and I was scared that it could be cancer. After opening up to my colleague, they urged me to get it checked. At the mammogram, I discovered I had breast cancer and needed to undergo immediate treatment,” explains Patricia, a 48-year-old breast cancer survivor and Mathematics teacher at one of Al Ain’s private schools.
“I was scared of losing my hair, my looks, my job but I had to pull myself out of crying so I said to myself that I will overcome this and I will undergo treatment as early as possible because life is beautiful and I needed to be strong for my family. Above all I wanted to get cured and live my life,” she continues.
Upon her diagnosis, Patricia was admitted to Tawam Hospital’s Breast Care Center (BCC) for further management of her condition. Here, Patricia underwent diagnostic tests and was given a tailored treatment plan endorsed by a multidisciplinary team.
“I was told I have cancer, started my treatment, chemotherapy and surgery, all in the midst of the pandemic and that was really difficult to deal with: I felt all alone dealing with cancer while isolated from the world,” she added.
Despite that, Patricia says she was determined to defeat the cancer against all odds and promised herself to continue a life of normality. Patricia managed to continue her teaching job on a remote basis and was able to sustain an income during the challenging lockdown she faced.
“I am thankful and lucky for the great support I received from my school colleagues, family, caregivers at Tawam Breast Cancer Center and the overall great health system provided by the UAE Government which provides world-class healthcare to both its nationals and expats. Early detection has saved my life,” Patricia concludes.
Tawam Hospital is renowned for its Breast Care Centre and serves many UAE-based patients with breast cancer. Since its establishment in 2007, Tawam Hospital’s Breast Care Centre’s multidisciplinary team of radiologists, surgeons, nurses and social workers have been providing holistic expert medical care to citizens and residents. With a particular focus on early diagnosis and treatment, the center is equipped with the latest scanning and diagnostic resources, including a mobile mammography breast screening unit, which efficiently bridges the gap between the service and the community. Other screening services include physical breast examination, surgical consultation, ultrasound scanning, breast MRI, ultrasound-guided biopsy, stereotactic-guided biopsy, and MRI-guided biopsy.
Dr. Aydah Saleh Alawadhi, Consultant and Medical Oncologist at Tawam Hospital’s Breast Care Center commented: “Patricia’s successful treatment is heavily attributed to the fact that Patricia was checked at an early stage, sending a powerful message to other women. Due to her early diagnosis, the team at Tawam Hospital were able to create an effective treatment plan to help Patricia become cancer free and resume her normal life with her family. We urge all women, especially those who are above 40 years, to visit their doctor at least once every year.”
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