While travelling through South America on their bikes in 2020, Elke discovered a lump in her left breast.
“Because of COVID, we returned to Australia in May 2020. Our house near Hobart was still rented out, so we stayed with friends in Bendigo. I had scans done in Bendigo, where they discovered a small cancer in the right breast as well (as the left),” says Elke.
“I started hormone therapy straight away. My husband and I decided that it was best for me to have both breasts removed and not to have a breast reconstruction. I don’t regret that decision at all. I also had all of the lymph nodes on the left side removed.”
Following her surgery, Elke and Harald returned to Hobart in August 2020.
Soon after, Elke commenced chemotherapy at Icon Cancer Centre Hobart, along with six weeks of radiation therapy.
“I rode my bike to the chemotherapy and radiation therapy sessions at Icon Hobart,” says Elke.
Elke now undergoes six monthly check-ups at Icon Hobart under the care of Medical Oncologist, A/Prof Louise Nott.
“I have decided not to let the cancer change the way we live our lives. I don’t want it to take over our lives,” says Elke, who turned 60 last year.
“We are outdoors people, mostly through our cycling, but we go bushwalking as well and like kayaking. We like bike touring.”