How many of us have found a rash or discoloration on our skin and wondered what it was? Before going to a doctor, did you Google it, or maybe compare it to other images online? That’s what Jennifer Cordts did.
A small rash on her breast had her curious and searching the web for answers. The 46-year-old mother of two didn’t like what she found. Months later, a doctor would confirm her worst fear had come true — she had cancer. Cordts was diagnosed with Stage 4 inflammatory breast cancer (IBC), a rare and aggressive form of the disease that is often deadly because it is diagnosed too late.
There was no lump, no tumor and no warning.
There is also no cure for IBC. Cordts has been given 3-5 years to live and receives treatments to slow down the impact of the cancer. Researchers have not determined what causes the rare disease, which makes up only one percent of all breast cancers.
Jennifer recently shared her cancer journey with WFAA-TV in a powerful story that illustrated her strength and her fears. Her words went viral. The story was shared by dozens of media outlets and blogs, both here and abroad.
“I had no idea the response I would get, it has been shocking, to say the least,” Cordts said.
She was contacted by dozens of friends and family members, even strangers reached out to support her, some with similar symptoms looking for her guidance.
“I realize that the journey is no longer about me, it’s now about everyone that comes after me, and I just want to help them,” she said.
Jennifer’s words continue to inspire others and she wants that to be her legacy. She went from patient to IBC advocate in the blink of an eye. Despite her prognosis, she remains determined to fight, and she says the amazing feedback she has received has only made her stronger.
“I feel like people are listening and that’s why I did it, that’s why I spoke, for that next person,” Jennifer said. “I don’t want anybody else to have to go through this.”
You can hear more about Jennifer’s journey, in her own words, below.