1. Share Your Story: Ann Low Cancer U 49:45

Ann is a serial entrepreneur, author, and cancer advocate. After her own cancer diagnosis in 2014, Ann, who spent several decades as a surgical assistant to a glaucoma specialist, recognized how little she knew about the cancer journey, even with her vast medical background. This raised a question in her mind, “If I found the experience difficult, what must it be like to have no medical background and receive a cancer diagnosis?” This question was the impetus for her to pen, Holy Crap I Have Cancer! Now What? What to Expect When You Weren’t Expecting, a book that assists patients, who are newly diagnosed with cancer through their treatment and into survivorship.

  • 02:22: I had dense breasts and a family history of cancer. 
  • 04:31: I go to the surgeon, and I fall in love with him immediately.  
  • 06:40: I spent 20 years in medicine as a surgical technician. 
  • 08:22: I was in such bad shape. 
  • 10:19: I was on a 21-day cycle. 
  • 12:45: It’s the first time I’ve ever thought of giving up. 
  • 14:00: East Coast chemotherapy can be far different from West Coast chemotherapy. 
  • 16:15: I had radiation after the mastectomy.  
  • 18:20: Silicone was banned for a long time, and they brought that back.  
  • 20:21: I was stage three. 
  • 22:08: After you got the implants, were you happy with them? 
  • 24:26: I suddenly started having vertigo all the time.  
  • 27:52: In Arizona, people have to be told about breast implant illness prior to getting implants.  
  • 28:48: What was your worst moment during that time? 
  • 29:24: Staph infections are typically more painful than the original injury or surgery. 
  • 32:29: I would give you a 15% chance of being here next year.  
  • 35:34: What’s nice about the clinical trials is that they keep a close eye on you. 
  • 36:14: What was your best moment?  
  • 39:49: What is one thing you wish you’d known at the very beginning of your cancer journey?  
  • 41:12: If you could only change one thing in health care in the U.S., what would it be and why?  
  • 45:18: Thriver Rapid Questions
  • 46:33: Aside from Cancer U, what is one resource that you would recommend for cancer patients and caregivers?



Andrea Wilson Woods is a writer who loves to tell stories, and a patient advocate who founded the nonprofit Blue Faery: The Adrienne Wilson Liver Cancer Association. Andrea is the CEO and co-founder of Cancer University, a for-profit, social-benefit, digital health company. With Cancer U, Andrea synergizes her talents of coaching, writing, teaching, and advocacy. For over ten years, Andrea worked in the education field as a teacher and professor for public and private schools as well as universities. Andrea obtained her master’s degree in professional writing from the University of Southern California; her nonfiction writing has won national awards. Her new book, a medical memoir titled Better Off Bald: A Life in 147 Days, is a #1 Bestseller on Amazon in multiple categories.