As staff at the IWK Foundation many of us have taken our children to the IWK and even been patients at the Health Centre ourselves.
Two years ago, a cancer diagnosis resonated through our office. After 10 years of working with patients, families, donors and the IWK Health Centre, one of our own needed the very services she worked so hard to ensure were there for Maritime patients.
This is the story of how Team IWK became Kelly Duggan’s team.
As she was returning to work from her second maternity leave, Kelly was waiting to have a mammogram after discovering two lumps in her right breast. She was still breastfeeding and was confident that these lumps were likely clogged milk ducts.
However, her results showed the lumps were invasive ductal carcinoma—the most common form of breast cancer. At 31 years old, Kelly, a happily-married mother of two children, had stage III breast cancer.
Kelly underwent a mastectomy and later an axillary node dissection to remove the lymph nodes under her armpit. She became a patient of the donor-funded IWK Breast Health Centre—a place for which she helped to raise the much-needed funds.
In addition to her surgeries, Kelly has received a bone scan, two MRIs, two CT scans and two additional mammograms, all at the IWK. She also completed six rounds of chemotherapy, 25 radiation treatments and 18 infusions of a targeted drug therapy through the Nova Scotia Cancer Centre.
To celebrate completing chemotherapy and radiation, Kelly held a party with close family and friends and asked her guests to bring a donation for the IWK’s Breast Health Centre. Together they raised $1,665.
Today, Kelly has returned to work and the IWK Foundation team was thrilled to welcome her back.
From the whole IWK Foundation team—thank you for ensuring that facilities like the IWK Breast Health Centre are here to support women like Kelly.