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The Daily Dish Below Deck Mediterranean

Captain Sandy Yawn Shares an Update on Girlfriend Leah Shafer’s Health Battle (UPDATED)

The Below Deck Mediterranean captain’s longtime partner recently underwent her second lumpectomy.

By Allison Crist
Captain Sandy Yawn and her girlfriend Leah Shafer pose for a photo.

UPDATE (July 24, 12:01 P.M.): Leah Shafer shared an amazing piece of news on July 24. Taking to her Instagram Stories, she said in a video, "Hey guys, just got the call from the doctor, and no cancer. I'm sooo grateful."

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Experiencing the scare, however, was "crazy." 

"It's the mind. Like, your mind starts to go crazy thinking, 'What if I have it? And what will I do?' and you start planning," Leah continued. "And thank god, I'm totally cancer free. I'm going to continue my checkups every three months and I'm actually on my way to see the doctor now just to get the clear to do any kind of traveling. But ahh, I'm soo relieved. Thank you everyone for your prayers! And yeah, everything's good so far. Alright, love you all. Please go get your checkups."

The original story continues below.

Captain Sandy Yawn is sharing an update on the health of her longtime girlfriend, Leah Shafer

The Below Deck Mediterranean captain took to Instagram on July 20 with a photo of her, Leah, and Dr. Kayla Griffith, the surgeon who performed Leah’s second lumpectomy. 

Reflecting on Leah’s past breast cancer battle in the caption, Captain Sandy wrote, “I was so glad to be by Leah’s side this time. The last time she had the surgery I was overseas filming. We will get the pathology reports in the next couple of days.”

“Thank you for all of your prayers and support,” Captain Sandy continued. “So far so good that Leah caught this in time. So far no breast cancer has developed and praying nothing else was found in surgery. She got it out.” 

Leah elaborated on the procedure in her own Instagram post, as well as the condition she has, which is known as “atypical lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS).”

“[It] is a condition where abnormal cells are found in the lobules of the breast. It is considered a non-invasive form of breast cancer, but it does increase the risk of developing invasive breast cancer in the future,” Leah wrote. “Regular monitoring and medical follow-up are typically recommended for individuals diagnosed with atypia LCIS. It’s essential to discuss your specific situation with a healthcare professional for personalized guidance and treatment options.”

Continuing, Leah urged her followers, “Please get checked!!”

“So far I’m good, no signs of breast cancer,” she added, “but will get final results in a few days. Today[’]s technology, it’s easy to be proactive. I get checked every 6 months[.] [MRI] found it…please be proactive.”

Captain Sandy shared a similar sentiment when concluding her post, writing, “[I]t’s all about awareness and catching things early. [P]lease be proactive.”

Sandy Yawn, Leah Shafer

Leah Shafer’s History with Breast Cancer

In 2019, Leah underwent a lumpectomy to remove pre-cancerous cysts from her right breast area. When her results came back in October, she shared good news in an emotional Instagram video. “Hi, everyone. I wanted to thank you all again for all your support along the way. I just got the phone call back from the doctor, and I am good,” Leah said. “My margins are clear, and everything’s good. It was like the longest six weeks of my life, honestly. But thank you, everyone. I’m grateful to God.” 

A few months later, in June 2020, Leah shared that she would be having a biopsy performed on her left breast after an MRI discovered a “questionable cyst.” Thankfully, the biopsy revealed that she was cancer-free. 

Any health-related information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider for any questions you may have regarding a medical condition, or before embarking on any diet, exercise, or wellness program.

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