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Terra Jole of “Little Women: LA” is proud of her recent accomplishment as the first little person ever to compete on “Dancing with the Stars.” But fans didn’t know that even as she was burning up the dance floor, she was dealing with a frightening health crisis.
“The thing that scares me the most is I have two hernias,” Terra says. She’s still recovering from a Caesarian section and dancing has strained her abdominal muscles. It was during her pregnancy that she noticed an alarming symptom – blood was leaking from one of her nipples. Between pregnancy, recovery, and making TV history, Terra has put off having her breasts examined for cancer.
Surgical breast specialist Dr. Kristi Funk explains that bloody discharge from the nipple isn’t uncommon in nursing women – “We call it rusty pipe syndrome,” she explains. “If bloody discharge persists after one week of breastfeeding, then you should really seek medical attention.” She adds that bloody discharge can be a sign of cancer, and Terra did the right thing by following up.
Terra had to make a difficult decision about whether to breastfeed her new baby son – she knew that breastfeeding was best for her baby, but her breasts could not be examined accurately while she was lactating. In the end, she chose to breastfeed for three months.
“Any time you hear the word cancer, you freak out,” Terra tells The Doctors. She’s come on the show to meet with breast surgeon Dr. Kristi Funk and get to the bottom of her symptoms. Now Terra has received her test results and she is ready to share them publicly for the first time! Watch the video below to see Terra’s diagnosis.
“What I do want to tell everyone is, don’t self-diagnose on the Internet!” Terra adds. “You did everything the right way,” ER Physician Dr. Travis Stork tells her. “You listened to your doctors.”
Terra is now focusing on self-care, including letting her hernias heal. “I feel like I’m doing this for my children, actually – because I’m alive for them!” she concludes.