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Peggy Hutton: Embracing a Cancer Diagnosis Without Delay

Peggy Hutton

“Peace of mind is worth a lot more than whatever you had in mind. So, get your mammogram every year, don’t delay it.”

Peggy Hutton
Breast Cancer

Peggy Hutton likes to keep busy. Between her work at the Weatherford Chamber of Commerce, her family, and an active social life, Peggy is always on the go.

In spring of 2017, Peggy was busy planning a trip to Peru with her daughter when she got the call to schedule her annual mammogram. After 20 years of mammograms and no signs of cancer, she considered skipping the appointment, but ultimately decided to schedule it.

When Peggy went in for her mammogram, she learned she needed a sonogram because she had dense breast tissue. That sonogram led to a biopsy, and on May 4, 2017, Peggy learned she had cancer.

Adding Cancer to the Calendar

Peggy met with Jessica Hals, D.O., medical oncologist at Texas Oncology–Weatherford, to discuss her diagnosis: stage IIIC, ER+/HER2+ breast cancer in her right breast. Dr. Hals explained each step of her treatment plan and Peggy started chemotherapy. Although having cancer wasn’t something Peggy had anticipated, she stayed positive as she incorporated treatments into her already busy routine.

“Peggy was always happy, even on the days she felt poorly,” Dr. Hals said. “Her outlook during therapy was always very positive, and I was inspired by her strength as she continued to work and remained active throughout her treatment.”

Although Peggy was not used to sitting still, she found great company in the infusion room while receiving chemotherapy.

“The people at Texas Oncology–Weatherford were just amazing,” Peggy said. “They always made me feel welcome and took care of me. The nurses in particular were kind to everybody and very warm. They made it a place where if you had cancer, that’s where you’d want to be.”

After nearly four months of chemotherapy, Peggy had a double mastectomy, which she later learned was the right decision after her surgeon found a concerning area in her left breast that would likely have become cancerous. Next, Peggy started radiation treatment under the care of Thanh Nguyen, M.D., radiation oncologist at Texas Oncology–Weatherford, and was impressed at how quick and seamless her radiation experience was.

Throughout her treatment, Peggy’s optimism never wavered. “Peggy was amazing,” Dr. Hals said. “I appreciated her upbeat attitude and the trust she placed in me to get her through this journey. She always had a smile and a story about her children to share.”

Encouraging Others

Today, Peggy’s cancer is considered in remission. She takes a maintenance medication, goes in for six-month checkups, and has become a strong advocate for screenings.

“I’m a firm believer in telling people ‘do not put it off, just go and do it,” Peggy said. “I make sure all my friends call and make their appointments, even if I have to hound them until I know they’ve done it.”

Breast cancer is the second-deadliest cancer among American women. Other than adopting a healthier lifestyle, early detection with regular mammograms remains the single most effective way for combating the disease.

“If I hadn’t scheduled my annual appointment, a year later my next mammogram would’ve shown entirely different results,” Peggy said. “Instead, since they caught my cancer early, they were able to take care of it. I’d tell anyone considering delaying their screening that peace of mind is worth a lot more than whatever you had in mind. So, get your mammogram every year, don’t delay it.”

The information included in this testimonial is based on one patient’s unique experience and is not intended to represent all patient outcomes or expectations.