The Courage to Overcome Breast Cancer

Standing on the precipice between life and death, it seems entirely natural to experience uncertainty, confusion and fear. This is exactly how one FV patient felt after learning she had breast cancer. She realised that she was afraid of dying. But gradually, this women’s worries transformed into courage and the will to face her difficult diagnosis and fight her cancer.

Determined to get the best treatment

Ms N.G. (44 years old, District 7, Ho Chi Minh City) cared deeply about her own health and that of her family members. Many years ago, Ms N.G. detected a lump in her chest. However, her annual examination and subclinical results all showed that it was a benign tumour. Because there were no dangerous signs, doctors advised Ms N.G. that she need only monitor her condition at home. But in April 2019, Ms N.G. found that her nipples had an abnormal discharge, and the next day she visited FV Hospital for a medical check.

A mammogram and biopsy of both sides of Ms N.G.’s chest showed that she had a benign tumour on one side and an early-stage cancer developing on the other. Doctors at FV Hospital’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology advised Ms N.G. to start treatment early. Her relatives tried to persuade Ms N.G. to go to cancer treatment hospitals, but she remained adamant that she wanted to undergo treatment at FV Hospital.

“Cancer treatment requires effective drugs and modern equipment. This is the reason I place my trust in FV,” she explained.

Ms N.G. is a decisive person and tackles problem head-on, and so insisted that she wanted a mastectomy performed on both sides of her chest. After a multidisciplinary meeting, her doctors said that this severe course was unnecessary and recommended Ms N.G. receive a breast-conserving treatment, known as a lumpectomy, instead. Ms N.G. appreciated the insights and empathy shared by her team of doctors, and Dr Basma M’Barek ’s experience and knowledge as Head of Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre. This support fired Ms N.G.’s confidence that she could overcome in her fight against cancer.

Ms N.G is strong and courageous to fight for her breast cancer. (Image is for illustrative purposes only)
Ms N.G is strong and courageous to fight for her breast cancer. (Image is for illustrative purposes only)

Ms N.G.’s multimodal treatment regimen included surgery followed by radiation therapy combined with chemotherapy, and then hormone therapy drugs for five years. Because FV is a general hospital which has great advantages in multidisciplinary consultation and treatment, Ms N.G. benefitted from the combined expertise of two specialties: the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, and the Department of Oncology, also known as Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre. The synthesis between the doctors of both faculties ensured that Ms N.G. would receive optimal care, from examination through to end of her treatment.

“I never felt like I was a cancer patient”

After two surgeries, Ms N.G. then received 16 rounds of radiotherapy and four rounds of chemotherapy. During this period, she still went to work and kept to her usual daily routine. Surprisingly, Ms N.G.’s colleagues did not realise that she was being treated for cancer. Although modern cancer treatment still has some side effects, patients do not suffer as much discomfort or feel as fatigued as they would have done in the past.

Paxman’s Scalp Cooling Technology, an anti-hair-loss treatment, was also a part of Ms N.G.’s care. When she started treatment, Dr Basma told Ms N.G. that the effectiveness of this new method was still unproven, but wanted to try it.

“After several radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatments, I still have some hair. That makes me trust developments in medicine even more,” says Ms N.G. looking at the wigs she bought but which are still unused. “Unbelievable” is the word Dr Basma used to describe Ms N.G.’s strong, courageous personality.

"Unbelievable" is the word that Dr Basma – Head of Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre, used to describe Ms N.G.’s strong, courageous personality.
“Unbelievable” is the word that Dr Basma – Head of Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre, used to describe Ms N.G.’s strong, courageous personality.

During her treatment, Ms N.G. only cried twice. Once, when she received her diagnosis and thought of her little girl waiting at home, and once when doctors suspected the tumour might have metastasised. Despite her fears, Ms N.G. bravely told her children about her disease and was proud to see how maturely her daughter handled the situation. Perhaps Ms N.G.’s positive thoughts and determination helped her through the most difficult stages of her treatment.

As a mother, Ms N.G. thinks that parents, schools and society should be more responsible for informing girls and young women about breast cancer. Her experience taught her that if the disease can be screened for and diagnosed early, the path to beating cancer becomes much easier.

Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre of FV Hospital provides the most currently advanced diagnosis and treatment services.

Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre brings together experienced French and Vietnamese doctors and experts, who their time listening, consulting and answering patient questions about the disease.

Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre has state-of-the-art facilities, equipment, and treatment technologies, including CT stimulation that accurately identifies and simulates the location and size of the tumour that is then treated with the most modern radiotherapy machine – Elekta Infinity that provides accurate treatment on the tumour with optimal dosage and fast speed that is harmless for the surrounding healthy tissue.

At Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre, each case is treated with multidisciplinary meeting to offer a truly personalised treatment regimen suitable to each patient’s condition, thereby helping patients achieve highest treatment efficiency with the least side effects. In addition, patients are also provided consultation on nutrition, psychology and pain management to help them stabilise their physical situation and stay optimistic throughout the treatment process.

Comprehensive professional cooperation with India’s largest HCG specialised cancer treatment system, including more than 20 cancer treatment centres in India and Africa, helps elevate FV’s Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre to a new level, becoming the leading Modern Cancer Care Centre in Vietnam and the region.

To make an appointment for cancer consultation and treatment at Hy Vong Cancer Care Centre – FV Hospital, please contact:

Hotline: (028) 5411 3440 or (028) 5411 3333

Working hours: 8:00 – 17:00 (Monday – Friday) and 8:00 – 12:00 (Saturday)

Address: 6 Nguyen Luong Bang, Phu My Hung, District 7, Ho Chi Minh City

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