Sara’s Story: A Baby and a Cancer Diagnosis

cancer birth sm

Sara Erzen was at the start of her second trimester of pregnancy when she was diagnosed with breast cancer – invasive ductal carcinoma. The news was a shock to the 35-year-old wife and mother of two daughters – she was young and had no family history of breast cancer.

The lumps in her breast – dismissed for months as dense breast tissue during pregnancy – now required immediate treatment.

That’s when a family member suggested that Sara, a Lansing resident, travel to Henry Ford Cancer Institute at Henry Ford Health System for a second opinion.

During her first visit to Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, she was met by a team of cancer specialists: oncologist Haythem Ali, M.D.; breast surgeon David Nathanson, M.D.; and radiation oncologist Eleanor Walker, M.D.

The Henry Ford Cancer Institute’s Tumor Board had already reviewed Sara’s medical records before she arrived and mapped out a comprehensive plan to treat her breast cancer both during and after her pregnancy. Two rounds of chemotherapy at Henry Ford Medical Center – Columbus in Novi while pregnant since Sara’s baby was past a critical developmental phase, followed by mastectomy surgery and radiation therapy soon after her baby is delivered.

Working alongside Sara’s oncology team, obstetricians Brent Davidson, M.D. and June Murphy, D.O., were by her side throughout her treatment to monitor her pregnancy.

And, on March 6, 2014, Sara’s baby, a third girl named Adeline Faith, was delivered by a team of Women’s Health experts at Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital.

Connect with our Cancer Team 24/7

Call us at (888) 777-4167

Schedule Appointment Online

If you are having an emergency, call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room. Please do not utilize this scheduling feature for urgent medical situations.

For your safety please call our MyCare Advice Line at 844-262-1949 before scheduling if: You currently have a temperature greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, you are experiencing a new loss of taste and/or sense of smell, in the past 21 days, you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, in the past 14 days, you have had contact with anyone diagnosed with COVID-19. Or, you have experienced two or more of the following symptoms in the last 3 days: fever, chills, drenching sweats, new cough, shortness of breath, body aches, headache, sore throat, runny nose or nasal congestion, or nausea/vomiting/diarrhea.

Henry Ford Health System is committed to ensuring our Deaf or hard-of-hearing patients and visitors have equal access to all services. We provide the appropriate auxiliary aids and services, including qualified sign language interpreters, TTYs and other assistive listening devices, at no cost. To request assistance, call 313-916-1896 or email CommunicationAccess@hfhs.org.

Schedule Appointment for