Komen celebrates nurse who relates to breast cancer patients through own journey

Nurse and breast cancer survivor knows the importance of having survivors by your side

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness month, and Komen teamed up with 12 News to recognize an HonorHealth nurse that goes above and beyond for her patients. 

Debbi Sorci has been a registered nurse for more than 40 years. She currently works at HonorHealth Scottsdale Shea Medical Center

"It's a whole different ball game when someone tries to have empathy when they don't go through it," said Sorci.

Depending on how you look at it, Sorci is either lucky, or unlucky to have a special connection with her breast cancer patients.

"Being a breast cancer survivor, I just feel like it's made me want to help them more," she said.

Sorci was diagnosed with the disease eight years ago and likes to use her own experience to help guide her patients through.

"They're thinking a mastectomy, I'm going to be deformed, and I'll take them and we're in the dressing area, and I'm like, 'I'll show you mine,' and they're like, 'You will?' And when they see they go, 'You look so normal!' And the visual of it -- you too will look normal too," said Sorci. 

Debbi is known to give patients her phone number so they have someone to relate to when they come back from a mastectomy. 

"The first time you see yourself in the mirror, it's a shock," she said. 

This year Komen chose to honor Sorci with their first-ever "More Than Pink" cape.

"The cape is for those that, like Debbi, go over and above to support breast cancer survivors," said a Komen spokesperson. 

Sorci said she will continue to give back and spread the message that getting a cancer diagnosis is not a death sentence.

Copyright 2016 KPNX


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