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Meral Uslu has an aggressive form of breast cancer. As a filmmaker, she wants to document her treatment, but not by placing a camera between the doctor and the patient. In My Cancer, the camera is the patient, giving viewers the feeling that it is they who are being treated.
At the start of the film, one of Uslu’s doctors summarizes the options for treatment: chemotherapy, radiation therapy, breast and armpit surgery, and hormone therapy. What follows are conversations with an assortment of doctors, nurses, physiotherapists and other health workers involved in Uslu’s treatment. These conversations – all of them with empathetic practitioners who are sincere in their appraisal of her chances – combine to form an intimate account of the relationship between doctor and patient, offering a lucid perspective on a complex subject. The main focus is on Uslu’s body, the body that has betrayed her and that she no longer trusts. Unselfconsciously, Uslu shows us what she must go through in order to get better. We see her IV getting inserted, radiation burns and surgical scars inspected and her breast implant massaged. After all the violence done to the physical self, the end of the treatment is just a first step on the long road to recovery, for both body and spirit alike.