At the age of 32, Jen Campisano was diagnosed with stage four, metastatic breast cancer when her son was just five months old. Nearly five years after her initial diagnosis, a skin biopsy indicated an autoimmune disease called sarcoidosis and a PET/CT scan revealed multiple spots of concern. As a follow-up, Jen had a lung biopsy. The results came back showing not cancer, but rather: more sarcoidosis. Further testing also showed no cancer.
After almost five years of treatment, Jen was officially restaged to Stage II breast cancer plus an autoimmune disease that can mimic metastases on scans and is treated with steroids. Today, she shows no signs of either disease, but will always carry the experience of living with “mets” for the first 5 years of her son’s life.
A lawyer and former lobbyist, Jen writes about navigating the intersection of motherhood and cancer (and now life after cancer) at www.boobyandthebeast.com. She has written for Women’s Health, The Huffington Post, ScaryMommy.com, STAT News, and a number of health- and parenting-related blogs.
Jen was featured on The Today Show in October 2014 in a segment kicking off Breast Cancer Awareness Month hosted by Joan Lunden. Jen was also honored to be included in Pfizer Inc.’s “Breast Cancer: A Story Half Told” project, which aims to change the conversation around metastatic breast cancer. She is a member of the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship’s Cancer Policy & Advocacy Team, volunteers as a RISE advocate and legislative advisor to the Young Survival Coalition, and is a board member for the Society to Improve Diagnosis in Medicine.
Jen resides in Phoenix, Arizona, with her husband, their eight-year-old son, Quinn, and their spirited toddler, Noelle.