Anne Elbrecht - Portrait of a Cancer Survivor
Anne Elbrecht was on vacation, on her way to Syria, when the gynecologic problems that she had been experiencing worsened. She made a medical pit stop in Istanbul, where doctors diagnosed Fallopian tube cancer. Elbrecht returned home immediately.
Fallopian tube cancer is rare, accounting for only about 1 to 2 percent of all gynecologic cancers. Although she considered gathering second opinions, she already had a UC Davis Medical Center primary-care physician, and had confidence in the health system and the cancer center. She underwent surgery, then six weeks of chemotherapy. Fortunately, she says, "I never had nausea, never got sick."
The care she received at the cancer center, she says, was exemplary. She loved her surgeon, Anne Rodriguez, whom she called "a sweetheart." She says that the staff at the infusion center was always upbeat, cheerful and skilled.
"I felt very fortunate, very well cared for."
"I felt very fortunate, very well cared for," she says.
Afterward, Elbrecht set to work on recovering her full physical and mental strength, which was naturally compromised by treatment. She was planning another vacation, this time to England, when she learned that her cancer had returned. But she is facing a new round of treatment with her natural aplomb, once she returns home. She’s taking her vacation first.