Patient Experience

Paulette Cooner

Breast Cancer Survivor

Paulette Cooner, a 68-year old Kingsland resident, says she had never been good about self-breast exams, but one Sunday morning in November 2011, she was taking a shower and God told her she should check her breasts. When she did, she found a very large, hard lump. Paulette was surprised since her mammogram had come back normal only five months earlier. "My heart was racing but I didn't tell anyone until after church, and then I asked my husband if he would check my breast and he found it immediately," she says.

Paulette was able to get in with her gynecologist, Carl Dohn Jr., M.D., immediately, and within weeks she was diagnosed with cancer. She started chemotherapy treatments the week after Thanksgiving under the direction of Duane Moores, M.D., of Southeast Georgia Physician Associates-Hematology & Oncology, a strategic affiliate of Southeast Georgia Health System. In early 2012, Paulette had a mastectomy and then she started radiation therapy under the direction of Timothy Jamieson, M.D., of Southeast Georgia Physician Associates-Radiation Oncology, also a strategic affiliate of the Health System.

Paulette was thankful that she was able to get her cancer treatments at the newly opened Cancer Care Center at the Southeast Georgia Health System Camden Campus. "I am especially thankful that the Cancer Care Center opened in St. Marys because I was really dreading the drive to Brunswick every day for radiation therapy," Paulette says. "I've had several friends with cancer that had to make that drive every day for a 10-minute treatment and it is very frustrating."

In addition to the convenience, she was extremely pleased with the staff at the Cancer Care Center. "Everyone was just so upbeat and friendly. Mary Parrot, the receptionist is as sweet as can be. The radiation therapists Brent Higgins and Jason Yates were superb. They always made me feel very comfortable. When I finished my treatments, it was almost like leaving friends because they made you feel so special and did such a good job."

Paulette completed her treatments in September 2012. "It wasn't really a scary time. It was just something I had to go through," she said. "Everyone at the Cancer Care Center put me at ease and being a Christian, I knew that God was in control so I wasn't afraid. I am happy to have my family around me, and I know that the future is in my Heavenly Father's hands."