Your case is so close to mine. Had 1.50 cm tumor, grade 3, stage 1, triple negative breast cancer. Surgeon did lumpectomy and removed one lymp node in Dec. 2009. Cancer had not spread to lymp sytem. Surgeon sent me to Onc. I did not know that I had to option to refuse chemo. But thinking back over her first meeting with us, husband and I can remember some things she said, which made us re-think her comments. She never said that chemo was an option, and never said I had to do chemo. But she and surgeon both said that radiation was not an option.
She did tell me that there is an older chemo drug that does not cause hair loss in some cases, but that the relapse time is not as good as the more modern drugs. So we opted to do the more modern drugs.
I had horrible side effects and it is on my record that I lost 9 pounds during that first three weeks after chemo. Diarrhea and vomiting were the cause. Most people gain weight, so I've been told. I even had to go back twice after the first chemo treatment and get iv fluids because I got so dehydrated.
When my hair started coming out, I was devastated. So I asked the onc. to change my chemo drugs to the one/ones that maybe would not cause further hair loss. She agreed and did what I asked. The side effects are some nausea and some headaches which are managable to pain medication and nausea pills/ suppositories and now a compound gel I put on my wrist when I feel the nausea coming on.
My relapse time may not be as good with these old drugs, but like I told her, I may get hit by a truck next Christmas. So there is no guarantee.
I hope and pray that this is the right decision. In the end, only God knows. I sincerely hope this information is helpful to you.
I am not advising you but only sharing my experience with you. You have to make the final decision.