I was diagnosed with lupus 11 years ago. I've been really lucky in that, aside from the initial flare (bilateral pleural effusion with a very small amount of fluid around my heart) from which I was diagnosed, I haven't had any major problems, in fact 2 years ago I was told I might not even have lupus anymore (I didnt think that was possible so I've taken it that it has been dormant)
Nearly 3 months ago I was diagnosed with very early stage breast cancer with no lymph node involvement. My treatment plan was lumpectomy followed by 3 weeks of radiotherapy then hormone treatment. Surgery went well and a couple of weeks ago I met with my oncologist for the first time and was told that, due to my lupus diagnosis, I have a higher risk of late side effects from the radiotherapy, (heart and lung problems, thickening of the treated area, rib fractures etc). Every person is at risk of this but mine risk is increased apparently, even though she couldn't give me any statistics or solid facts.
I've now been given the choice of a mastectomy (drastic given my tumour was pea sized) or basically take a chance with the radiotherapy. Nothing had been mentioned prior to this and neither my surgeons or breast care nurse were aware of any possible complications.
I spoke with my rheumatologist who has said she wasnt aware of there being an issue either and she would be happy for me to go ahead because if she was seeing me for the first time now, she wouldn't be even diagnosing me with lupus at all. (I also have psoriatic arthritis which she says is the focus of my treatment now and not the lupus). My oncologist is still saying, even with that information, that there could, maybe, be a higher risk.
I guess what I'm getting to is does anyone with lupus have experience of radiotherapy. Has anyone been told they cant have it or read anything regarding this matter because I cant find any thing and I'm really confused as to what to do.