Kaitlyn's Story: Part 2 - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

5/13/03

Kaitlyn's Story: Part 2

On Sunday night, you met Kaitlyn Hibdon, a second grader at Murfee Elementary, who's had to grow up fast in the last nine months. It was in March when she found out her mother had a rare and rapidly growing breast cancer. In part two of our series, Kaitlyn's Story, we learn more about that kind of cancer, and see why love is such great medicine.

The term IBC was first coined in the '20s because it looks like an infection -- slightly red, the skin is slightly thickened. It would have been the first clue for Lynetta, had she picked up on the color difference. Instead, it was a small lump that took her to the doctor. Typical of IBC, the cancer was rapidly growing.

IBC is the most lethal of the breast cancers. It is ususally not found by a mammogram or ultrasound because it often grows in nests or sheets rather than a solid tumor. Other symptoms can include:

  • Increase in breast size over a short period of time
  • Breast pain that is constant or stabbing
  • Thickened areas of the skin
  • Nipple may be flat or turned in
  • Breast may feel warm to the touch
  • Itching may seem relentless
  • Lymph nodes in the underarm may appear swollen

It is a disease that grows quickly and likes to spread. After agressive treatment that included a mastectomy, eight rounds of chemo, and six weeks of radiation, Lynetta's spot on her liver disappeared. Maybe because little Kaitlyn added some unusual therapy of her own, turning a scary diagnosis into a positive plan of action, something Dr. Ronaghan says likely encouraged Lynetta's steady recovery.

"Certainly what her daughter is doing is remarkable, but a lot of that comes from the person that Lynetta is. She's a fighter. There is no question in my mind that that has a tremendous affect on people recovering from whatever," says Dr. Ronaghan.

Lynetta says that she finished her last oral chemo this weekend and appears to be cancer free, which she says is the best Christmas present ever. But since doctors say Lynetta's future is still uncertain, Kaitlyn asked me to ask you if you'd like to buy a t-shirt, because the Lynetta support team is still going strong.

A medical fund has been established by friends of the Hibdon family. The account is at American State Bank under Lynnetta Hibdon Medical Expenses. You can also get an order form for Lynetta's support team (shirts and caps) by ( clicking here ).

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