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NMSU student to talk about her cancer diagnosis as part of Tough Enough to Wear Pink events

Breast cancer is probably the furthest thing from the minds of most 25-year-old women. It was for Lei Lani Nava, a New Mexico State University student and mother who was diagnosed with the disease in February of this year.


Now in full remission, Nava will talk about her experience during a ?Girl Talk? event at 5 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 15, at the Corbett Center Auditorium. She?ll be joined by Patty Chavana, a certified nurse practitioner and a women?s health care provider, who will also speak. The event is presented by the NMSU Panhellenic Council and the Campus Health Center as part of the NMSU Aggies are Tough Enough to Wear Pink breast cancer awareness campaign.

?I didn?t have any visible lumps,? Nava said. ?I just felt something wasn?t right. I had some chest pain, but the doctor thought it was stress.?

After going back and forth with her doctor, Nava requested imaging. That?s how technicians found two separate 5-millimeter tumors. Later, a biopsy showed they were cancerous. Surgery, chemotherapy and radiation followed. Through the entire process, Nava remained a full-time student while also working full-time.

?It was rough,? she said. ?I was only 25. I didn?t have typical symptoms. I think the biggest thing is that women should be aware of their bodies because breast cancer can happen at any age. If you think there is an issue, keep pushing to get it checked out.?

?We wanted to bring awareness to students that this is something that can happen to them,? said Gabby Munoz, an NMSU student and president of the Panhellenic Council. ?I really hope students are able to walk away with the understanding that even though we all have busy lives, you need to take the time to focus on your body and your health.?

Free food will be available for attendees. There will also be a pink photo booth and a drawing for prizes. For more information, contact Amanda Gallivan at 575-646-4045.