Patti ChlipalaBreast Cancer Survivor Stories
At Lee Health, we have exceptional employees who are also incredibly strong breast cancer survivors, and we want to take this opportunity to celebrate each one of them and their inspiring stories for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Patti Chlipala has been at Lee Health for 25 years, and currently focuses on raising funds for the Regional Cancer Center!
Patti was a wife and mother of a three year old in 1997 when she discovered a lump in her breast while doing a self examination. She was frightened and did not know what to expect. After going to get a mammogram her biggest fear was confirmed, she had breast cancer and would soon begin the fight of her life.
Throughout her battle, she focused on the importance of remaining positive and hopeful. Her husband, mother, brother, sister and coworkers all provided her with the support that she needed to stay strong as she fought against breast cancer.
Everything from phone calls to visits from her loved ones helped her as she navigated through her journey.
As a breast cancer survivor, Patti knows the importance of creating an open dialogue with the doctors and nurses who are providing care to breast cancer patients. When looking back on her journey, she remembers the importance of asking questions and taking notes from the physicians who were willing and able to help her through every step of her journey.
After her own breast cancer battle, Patti is paying it forward and offering positive support to those who need it! Patti knows first-hand how success stories like hers can encourage and support those fighting the same battle.
“One nurse at Lee Memorial said to me after my surgery, ‘Just remember when you're 80 you will still have breasts of a 20 year old,’” Patti said. “It still makes me smile.”
We hope her story of survival will help another woman who is currently fighting a similar battle to stay strong, no matter how hard it may be. Patti and Lee Health are here for you! You can help make breast cancer treatment available to more people by donating to the Sharon MacDonald Breast Health, Lee Health’s Breast Cancer Fund.
If you would like to share your story, please reach out to Alyssa.Young@LeeHealth.org