Carol Borg’s story

Cancer was the last thing Carol Borg expected when she decided to retire after years of dedicated service. Full of laughter, love and light, Carol and her husband, Jim, have an outlook on life that is rare to find.
Carol Borg’s story

During a routine yearly physical in May 2014, the discovery of a lump in Carol Borg’s breast was terrifying for her and her husband of 43 years who had only recently embarked on their retirement years together. Carol described being “scared to death” the day the lump was found. Melinda Ament, CNP, Catalyst Clinic, sent Carol to Ridgeview Women’s Imaging & Breast Center to have an ultrasound and a mammogram performed. Geoffrey D. Raile, MD, Consulting Radiologists, Ltd., immediately reviewed the images and decided to proceed with a biopsy of the lump. The biopsy and images confirmed that Carol had stage II breast cancer that had spread to her lymph nodes. Upon hearing the diagnosis, she describes her gratitude for Terry Hoelz, RN, OCN, breast cancer nurse, who immediately stepped in to call the surgeon, Dawn Stapleton, MD, Lakeview Clinic, and started an immediate care plan for her. An entire team was assembled for Carol, including Dr. Stapleton, Ridgeview oncologist Dr. Kamran Darabi, and nurses and staff of the Ridgeview Hematology/Oncology & Infusion Center. 

“That first weekend was devastating, we just cried a lot,” Carol recalls, describing the days between her diagnosis andthen meeting Dr. Darabi three days later. Given the stage and aggressiveness of her cancer, Dr. Darabi recommendedCarol start with chemotherapy first, then follow with surgery.

After learning what her treatment plan would be, and the reassuring hope offered by Dr. Darabi, Carol said, “I just felt calm. And I haven’t lost that sense of calm since I was there.”

She continues to praise her entire care team, from the infusion nurses who always greeted her and Jim with smiles andwarm regards, to the physicians and staff who called her between appointments to make sure she was doing okay.Carol reiterates that every member of her Ridgeview care team has said that she can call, no matter when or what time,if she ever has questions or needs anything.

“When you are there [Ridgeview] you feel like they really care about you—that you’re not just a number. That means a lot to me.”

Carol completed her last round of chemotherapy at the Ridgeview Hematology/Oncology & Infusion Center located at Two Twelve Medical Center in Chaska. Next, she will embark on a double mastectomy. Although the wife, mother of two and grandma to four has endured much since May, her hopes are high thanks to the care she has received at Ridgeview, her faith, and the love and support she has received from family and friends.

Breast cancer affects thousands of people every year in Minnesota. Consider supporting Ridgeview’s Cancer Care Services fund by making a donation this year to the Every Moment Counts campaign. This campaign focuses on raising endowment funds and capital gifts to help secure Ridgeview’s future and focuses on key areas of need, including cancer care. Your gift will help ensure that other women, men and families coping with the challenge of cancer treatment can receive the same high quality of care and personalized support that Carol and her family have received.

For nearly two decades, Ridgeview’s Cancer Care program has earned national accreditation from the American College of Surgeons Commission on Cancer. Only 30 percent of U.S. hospitals have this designation. For patients and their families it means receiving the highest quality cancer care close to home.

We need to invest in today and tomorrow to ensure we are ready for the moments when you need us most, now and in the future.

View Ridgeview Foundation's year-end appeal.