Why I’m taking tamoxifen to avoid breast cancer

My family is no stranger to cancer. In 2005, my mother was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and in 2006, my older sister faced a diagnosis of lobular breast cancer.  Although both lived in Florida, I insisted they come to Houston to be treated at MD Anderson. I wanted the best possible outcome for my precious family, and I felt that MD Anderson was an integral part of that plan. As a registered nurse and the caregiver for my mother and sister, I was continually impressed with the medical care they received at MD Anderson, as well as the extraordinary compassion and attention of the staff members. Then, in 2006, I became a patient at MD Anderson. Choosing MD Anderson for breast cancer screening On a routine visit to MD Anderson with my sister, I mentioned to her oncologist that I’d noticed an unusual discharge from my nipple. She advised me to make an appointment immediately to see Therese Bevers, M.D., in the Cancer Prevention Center.  When a world-class oncologist makes such a strong recommendation, I heed their advice.  My diagnostic testing and evaluation with Dr. Bevers turned out to be nothing serious. But based on my experiences and the specialized expertise of the radiologists, I decided to begin getting routine mammograms at MD Anderson. In 2012, my mammogram showed an area that necessitated a biopsy. Fortunately, the biopsy came back normal, but three years later, Dr. Bevers noted a suspicious area in the opposite breast. A second biopsy showed abnormal cellular changes, or atypical hyperplasia, but not cancer. At that point, I began to accept that I had an...