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Buddy Check 3 May

Updated: Saturday, August 3 2013, 01:50 PM CDT
The latest trend in breast cancer treatment is the addition of "Nurse Navigators". Nurses who take the journey, step by step, with their patients.
               
For breast cancer survivor Julie Traud, check ups and mammograms can be tense times seeing her longtime Nurse Navigator Patty Dye helps.

"She checks on me before the mammogram and after the mammogram," said Traud. Traud's been cancer free for two years.

Dye was with her from the diagnosis of a very aggressive, stage two malignant tumor, through surgery, chemo and radiation.
   
Dye's main job as a Nurse Navigator is to help guide overwhelmed patients through the many choices and options facing them.

"When I started chemo, it kinda put a fog in my head and I couldn't always think straight," she said. "Navigate them now through the sea  of doubt, uncertainty, fear.  Huge amounts of fear."

Dye is there to answer questions, help keep medicine info straight even go to appointments when needed.

"She'll hold my hand if I need her too we've shared tears, but a lot of laughter too," said Traud. Like the time Traud dyed her hair after completing radiation Pink, for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

"Patty thought it was funny, she thought it was funny," Traud said. "When she came to support group with that pink hair, we were all just like, that's so Julie."

To this day -- Dye checks in with Traud regularly and Traud says it's made all the difference. But Dye downplays her role her recovery.

"What helped her the most was her wonderful attitude and the support of her family," said Dye. "I wasn't sure I was gonna make it or be positive, but I was and I know a lot of that is because of Patty, was right there pushing me and telling me, we gonna get through it together."
Buddy Check 3 May


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Washington Times