My Lifeline, My Friend, My Cancer Nurse

By Eleanor Kim Waldrup

My oncology nurse, Wyndelon 'Nikki' Simmons, is my lifeline of communication and support in all aspects. I also have one of the best oncology doctors, Dr. Barbara Craft, at University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson.

Your team becomes your lifeline, and over my 10-year journey (invasive ductal carcinoma, metastatic breast carcinoma) we have developed a strong friendship.

During this rollercoaster ride of the past three years, there has been a flare-up of cancer every eight to 10 months in my back, and I always reach out to Nikki for guidance. The delicate procedure of needle ablations in the vertebrae as the cancer is removed is extremely painful afterward. Nikki takes care of what is needed.

Nurse Nikki has been my go-to between Dr. Craft and Dr. Majid Khan, my interventional radiology physician in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, who performs my microwave ablations. Nikki ensures that all procedure documentation and MRI and PET scans are sent to Dr. Khan in order for appointments to be set in a timely manner because cancer does not wait.

Time and time again, Nikki’s support and confidence helped me press forward in situations I didn’t feel comfortable in. She always makes sure I have what I need and checks afterward to see if I need anything else. All patients with cancer know we have special nurse angels in our lives.

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