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Casey DeSantis Diagnosed with Breast Cancer

October 4th, 2021 by Mike Vasilinda

During her more than two and a half years as Florida’s First Lady, Casey DeSantis has fought for single mothers, better mental health for school students.

Now during breast cancer awareness month, she herself is fighting the disease.

The announcement came in an email from the Governor’s Office Monday.

The Governor called Casey the centerpiece of their family, adding she is facing the most difficult test of her life.

CDC Data shows 131,409 Florida women were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2018.

The rate of 438 per 100,000 is nearly four times higher than the national rate of 127 cases.

“Certainly breast cancer increases with age, so that is part of it,” said Dr. Shelby Blank, a surgeon with Tallahassee Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Blank told us there is always room for optimism.

“Aside from skin cancers, it’s the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women,” said Blank.

Terri Cariota is a retired police officer who got her diagnosis last week.

“I literally broke down in tears,” said Cariota.

She had this advice for the First Lady.

“Whatever her degree of breast cancer requires do it. Because health is certainly more important than physical appearance,” said Cariota.

We’ve been told the First Lady is being treated by doctors at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa.

Dr. Karen Russel, an oncologist at Tallahassee Memorial, said regular self examinations and early treatment are keys to survival.

“Still seeing a ton of women with, I’ve only had my breast cancer a month. Well, we know its been there for longer because of the lack of screening in the year of COVID 2020,” said Russel.

Regular screening is important to detection.

Cariota only got screened because she got a call from her insurer saying she was overdue.

Also in the Monday release, the Governor called his wife a true fighter and said she will never, never, never give up.

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