The Real Housewives of New Jersey star Amber Marchese was recently diagnostic with breast cancer for the second time. The 37-year old battled cancer back in 2009, and now Amber is opening up for the first time about what she refers to as a “shocking” diagnosis.
Amber shares her reaction when she was diagnosed with PEOPLE saying, “I was just sick to my stomach. I can’t even begin to describe the feeling you get when someone says you have cancer. Then to get it again after you thought you fought it and thought it was behind you ….”
On April 23rd, Amber’s surgeon revealed to her that the cancer had recurred in the same breast as the first time. When Amber learned this she admits, “I was thinking, ‘This is definitely it. I’m going to die.’”
Amber felt that she was cancer free forever after undergoing a double mastectomy and going through chemotherapy saying, “I thought, you remove it, you go through the harsh treatments, and you move on. So I was shocked. Everyone is shocked.”
She adds, “You’re never going to remove 100 percent of the breast tissue with a mastectomy. So you just pray to God that you remove enough. You have a double mastectomy and chemotherapy to stack all the odds in your favor so that there is no recurrence. The percentage of it recurring is very small, less than 5 percent. I just fell into that category. I wasn’t so lucky.”
Amber then shares words of encouragement to women who may be dealing with the same situation saying, “This is not common. I want people to understand that. My case is not the average case. I don’t ever want to deter women from getting a mastectomy.”I don’t want women to say, ‘Well, she had a mastectomy. What’s the point of getting a mastectomy if it doesn’t work?”
She continues, “That’s a very dangerous message to get out. I hear it all the time. ‘You got a double mastectomy. How did it not work?’ My case is not the norm. Do what’s right for you.”
Amber explains that her oncologist believes that the cancer has not spread and “is very hopeful.” He will remove the remaining breast tissue with clean margins and Amber adds, “I’m going to be on radiation five days a week for five weeks. The doctor is putting me on five different drugs, including Herceptin.”
Sending our best to Amber with her surgery and treatment!