FORMER MISS TEXAS INTERNATIONAL 2005, BREANNA ALLERKAMP, believes in taking full advantage of time. Married since 2012, Breanna and her husband Jim know just how precious time is since Breanna’s cancer diagnosis in June of 2012 at the age of 27. After being married for only a month Breanna was diagnosed with Stage I breast cancer on June 4, 2012. Breanna remembers telling her mom, “I don’t want to die.” Her mom and her doctor both said, “you will not – we will fight it.”
After meeting with a surgeon and oncologist to determine her next steps, Breanna flew to the Cleveland Clinic to get a second opinion. In July of 2012 she had a double mastectomy and her port for chemotherapy was put in. Breanna started chemotherapy in August 2012 and ended in December 2012 after six treatments. She then started a year of targeted therapy with Herceptin.
Although the former pageant winner received a clean bill of health after her mastectomy, her treatment continued. After taking Tomoxifen, an estrogen blocker, for three years, Breanna came off of the drug in January of 2016 because she and her husband were ready to start a family. During this time Breanna returned to college and received her Masters in Business in May of 2016. In July of 2016 Breanna and Jim started IVF, but in August 2016 doctors did an ultrasound and found the cancer had returned and had spread to her pectoral muscle and lymph nodes. Doctors recommended that the couple not continue trying to have children due to the estrogen in her body as Breanna’s cancer is estrogen driven and she is a carrier of the BRAC gene.
This time the cancer was Stage 3 and required Breanna to endure 16 rounds of chemotherapy. She will have surgery again this month and radiation will start 4-6 weeks after surgery, 5 days a week for 6 weeks.
When asked about her future hopes and dreams, Breanna, of course, hopes to face the future cancer-free and possibly add to her family by adoption or surrogacy.
Breanna tells her story to offer her first-hand knowledge of the disease to help others as well as to inspire those who are going through a cancer diagnosis to have hope and to continue to live life to the fullest. She feels that positivity goes a long way – stay positive no matter how difficult it seems. You can do it!
Breanna and her husband Jim love to travel every chance they get, but are happy to be settled in their home with their beloved corgi, Hugo.