A newbie with a new diagnosis and a big decision to make...

Hello lovely ladies, 

I’ve been reading this forum for a few days and can’t say enough how helpful and supportive everyone is here - I’m hoping very much that you will help me and share some of your support and wisdom as I don’t have anyone else to talk to.  


I was diagnosed with grade 2 invasive lobular breast cancer in my right breast last Monday. It’s also been found in one of my lymph nodes. It’s been a surreal and teary four weeks with an avalanche of bad news starting with the “it’s probably nothing” conversations, to having blood tests and scans, having a date booked in for chemo, to being told today that I need to have a mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiation therapy and be on medication for a few years. 


I’ve spent the last week getting my head around the fact I need chemotherapy, no-one talked to me about a mastectomy so it’s come as a complete and horrifying shock.  

I’m a bit overwhelmed by it all, I went to the clinic today thinking I was just going to have an ultrasound on my right breast, and came out with all of this. The doctor doing my ultrasound, who I’d never met before, just told me as she was doing a biopsy on my left breast. (Apparently something showed up from my MRI - no one told me that either, but she said it looks innocent). 


My doctor told me later that I definitely would have to have a single mastectomy and chemotherapy and has asked that I decide in which order to have them (by our appointment next Thursday). He said that he wouldn’t do reconstruction immediately as radiotherapy affects the implant, and that it would need to happen 8-10 months after radiotherapy finishes - but I’ve been reading different opinions and options on this forum. 

I have a date to start chemotherapy and a date to have surgery and I don’t know how to chose. 


Also, and I know this might sound silly, if I only have one breast removed and reconstructed when my body ages and naturally changes will I have one perky teenage boob and one saggier more age appropriate one?!  


I’m 42, single, live alone and am very pragmatic. I don’t know what to do - I love my boobs :smileysad: 


I would be really grateful for some love, support and advice. :heart:


Thank you,




To answer your last point - when I had a mastectomy I also had a breast reduction on the other side because, as the surgeon said “we can’t match the droop:smileylol:”. 30 years later, they still match pretty well, certainly not the scenario you’re envisaging.


I had chemo before surgery but that was for a specific purpose, to reduce the tumour before a lumpectomy, so different from you. In your situation, I’d give some thought to your existing plans for the summer - chemo’s a longish process which could see you out of action for a couple of months whereas, all being well, recovering from a mastectomy would be a much shorter process.


Just to add, many of us have had dramatic results with chemo and so I wonder why you’re being definitely told you need a mastectomy at this stage - was that explained to you?

Hi Cheryl

First of all a big welcome to you to this forum where you will find lots of support and advice. Your story sounds very similar to my own, so I wanted to share in case it helps. I remember all too well my GP saying my lump doesn’t feel sinister but referring me just to be 100% sure, and then being shocked to get the diagnosis of IDC.


I had a lump plus some DCIS plus node involvement, and had chemo, mastectomy and radiotherapy in that order. I was also asked to choose whether to have chemo or surgery first, my team said both options are the same in terms of survival. It was all a bit of a blur but I think I chose chemo first to give me time to think about reconstruction options.


As I had DCIS and the lump and am small breasted, a lumpectomy wasn’t an option. I chose immediate recon with an implant. Surgeons are, as you say, reluctant to do implants before radiotherapy because of the risk of hardening of the scar/implant, but mine was in a Braxon sling on top of the muscle, which is supposed to reduce the risk. Fingers crossed!


It’s good to read Kathy’s experience of how her recon looks and matches, thanks for sharing Kathy. I’m happy enough with my implant, but it doesn’t look the same as my real one, it’s more rounded. I use a prosthesis over my real one to even things up under clothes.


I’m very happy to chat more or try to answer any questions.

Sending hugs ??

Evie xx

Hello hon 

im new to this also I was told 2 week ago that I had early stage cancer I’m 45 and thought they do mammograms from 40 in oz so I thought I will go nothing to loose nothing wrong no lumps or bumps but them I got a call to say I need further testing that’s when 2 weeks ago I had a cluster of calcifications 8cm long so big! So on Thursday just gone had a mastectomy with a expander on place I Find out next week if I need radiation then reconstruction will start 3/4 months they are going to take expander out replace with an implant and then reduce the other side and give them a lift! I was an e cup but hopefully going to a c cup! Not had chance to think about it all keep me posted how you are


thanks Sam