was confirmed what I already knew,left breast has quite a lot of hidden lumps with one i found shown up by MRI,
have been told I need full mastectomy of left breast and auxilary node clearance in my armpit, Also MRI has shown something on my liver so need to have CT scan asap, this is worrying me most at the moment…fear of the unknown i suppose. will then have heceptrin and chemo then radiotherapy and targetted hormone treatment in tablet form due to type of cancer. Havent got my head around all of the technical terms yet! Not opted for reconstruction at same time as this would have delayed and at the moment I just want it cut out of my body!! Surgery booked in on 4th Feb…it hasnt sunk in yet…i dont cry…because of the kids really
Boyfriend found yesterday harder than me as he had convinced himself it could just be a lump of fatty tissue!!he was shell shocked and I ended up supporting hime really.
I told the kids last night, they have know all along what was happening , but still difficult, so havent really freaked out myself yet?think I may have a delayed reaction?
Has anyone got any coping strategies or advice…am scared about recovery time from op and coping with exam stressed and lazy teenagers .
Thinking of getting hair cut short next week…any advice?? any advice on anything really…hopefully I will be able to return the favour further into my treatment
Firstly, welcome to the forums, I am hope you will find it a great source of information and support.
I’m sorry to read of your diagnosis, the first few days and weeks are always difficult when coming to terms with things and getting to grips with your treatment plans, etc.
As well as the support you will receive on the forums you might find it helpful to order the BCC resources pack. It has been specifically designed for those newly diagnosed and contains information to help you better understand your diagnosis, test results and the various treatments available. If you would like to order a copy just follow the link bellow:-
Also, do give the helpline a ring if you need any further support or information. They’re on 0808 800 6000. Open 9-5 Monday to Friday and 10-2 Saturday.
Best wishes Sam, BCC Facilitator
Hi Andie so sorry that you are having to go through this nightmare. Be assured that many of us on these forums have found ourselves faced with very similar nightmare - but we somehow find a hidden strength and it all becomes more manageable. For me it helped knowing there were so many lovely women on this site who knew from experience what we are faced with and demonstrate that it is survivable and life can still be good. Take one day at a time and don’t try and tackle all the “what ifs” that our inner demons try and throw at us! Hugs, Tuppence
Hi Andie, the first few days are the worst and it is a horrid time for you. You are not alone in that you find yourself ‘supporting others’ rather than concentrating on yourself and that is additional pressure for you at this time - Its good that you have a date for your Mx, like you I wanted it cut away as soon as possilbe and once its out and they get the lab results they will give you a treatment plan. Like you I opted for a delayed reconstruction as I didn’t want the bother of waiting and healing I just wanted to get on with my treatment. I was Diagnosed 3 years ago and due to the size of lump and node involvment I had chemo/rads and now on hormone theropy. I have just had an uplift in my good breast to make me more even and I am feeling fine. You will get through it and you will find the strength to do so - many many of us have and are here to tell the tale. In respect of your MRI scan - I was told that an MRI is so senstive it shows everything up that ususally needs further scanning/testing. My surgeon is reluctant to use MRI unless necessary for the reason and its additional worry for us and he said it usually ends of as nothing anyhow. They always tend to do a CT scan at the early stage as a sort of ‘staging’ scan so they can see everything in your body as it is now and then compare later - it doesn’t necessarily mean anything bad or sinister and is routine so as Tuppence says don’t waste you energy on the 'what if’s that may never happen. Focus on the now, and get your surgery out of the way and you will feel so much better when you have the treatment plan and can take control once more. lots of hugs xx
Tuppence and Saffronseed
Thanks for wise words and sharing. Had a bit of a meltdown today so was lovely to log on tonight and see two posts.yes reading some others posts has helped answer qyuestions i didnt even know I had. Interesting what you said about MRI makes me feel a little more hopeful…not going to worry about that what if now…
hugs back to you both and thank you for taking the time to reply
PS any recommendations on post op underwear…am 36DD so all mine underwired and inappropriate xx
Just popped by to say hi and I found the genie bra amazing despite being a 40ff! Loads of women get this diagnosis it is a massive shock for everyone and you will be in the early stages of it too(the shock).when I got diagnosed someone told me to take control of everything I could. For me this meant no cards, flowers or visits! I asked for donations to my little smashers fund (used to buy Lego when I had chemo). I kept in contact with my wide circle of friends via text. I had a small group of pals who supported me through those early months. My advice - use BCC peer supporters - they were amazing. Use this frum and macmilan too. Be kind to yourself and really just do the next few hours at a time!
I had my m/x and node clearance on Nov.29 and start chemotherapy & Herceptin on Jan 31st. My op. and recovery experiences are fairly typical I think: operation, in hospital overnight, drains in for just over a week, doing gentle arm exercises from 2 days after op. You will need to take it easy and not do heavy lifting (particularly with affected arm). They usually don’t start any rads or chemotherapy for at least a month after op. until your wound has healed sufficiently. (Remember this is just my experience and every one’s BC experience varies). I was petrified before op., but it was ok. The drains are a nuisance, but you can find ways of attaching them to a belt or a special pocket so you can move about more easily. Also you will probably find that you’re only comfortable sleeping on your back with loads of pillow support until chest area feels better. You can tell your teenagers that they have to do all the housework, cooking, etc. now, because you are not allowed to lift things - and wait on you hand and foot of course!
Tuppence & the others are right - take one day at a time and don’t try and tackle all the “what ifs”. You said you are thinking of getting hair cut short next week - there is plenty of time for thinking about that - just deal with the mastectomy (m/x) first, and put yourself first, because you will need to recuperate after surgery.
Re. post-op underwear - you’ll get appointment for prosthesis. I bought a lovely pocketed m/x bra, non-underwired, at a store with an experience fitter, prior to getting the silicone prosthesis at the hospital - good to have support for real boob again! After my op. I just wore soft cotton stretchy vests.
Hi Andier, I had a full mastectomy of left breast on 7th Jan and removal of gland (which fortunately was clear). The MRI scan showed my tumour to be nearly double the size than it actually was and chemo was planned for me which now fortunately i do not have to undergo, so I wouldnt worry too much about what the MRI scans say as they can often be inaccurate.
At the last minute after speaking to my Macmillan nurse I opted for an implant as just like you was being strong throughout December and christmas for the sake of my children and husband and thought that I would be able to get my head around it in the New year but 3 days before my op my consultant agreed to the implant even though he was concerned it could delay my further treatment should there be any infections.
My advise to you would be sit tight, have faith and also keep talking especially to the lovely ladies at the end of the phone at Breastcancer care line, their understanding and advise has been amazing. I waited until the kids went out for the day when I first made the call so i could do it in private and break down if i needed to… and trust me I did and they were amazing. Looking back now in hindsight im glad they gave me the faith to trust in my own instincts and be honest with my nurse and consultant to how I feel.
For Post op underwear, again I suggest you speak to your macmillan nurse as she advised after surgery the kind of bra i would need and I had a implant to support too so a good bra was really important.
With regards to the kids, they amazed me, it took a few days but they couldnt do enough for me and have restored my faith in my family. My sister told me that the kids would rally around when the going got tough but i didnt believe her until it happened in our home. Please dont worry, its not as bad as you think it might be, 2 weeks after my op i discovered my energy again but its very important to listen to your body and stop, rest, when you need to and not over do it. Good luck you will get through this and be stronger for it xx
Hi, i have been diagnosed with breast cancer. I have had one op, so far. I am now told that I need further surgery and chemo and radiology? treatment. I was feeling very scared. Being on this site, I realise I am not alone, there are a lot of us out there, fighting this awful thing. This gives me hope and makes me feel less fearful. Good luck to you all.
Thanks for all of you words of wisdom,unfortunately last night I learnt that it all changes as I have the secondary in my liver and spine.so just chemo now but no meeting with oncologist until 18th Feb!!! its the waiting that kills…had to wait an hour yesterday and nearly ran out of hospital twice!! am now thinking ‘just breast cancer’ would have meant that I would feel like alottery winner…sorry those of u that have primary not meant to be little your plight…cant believe I would have ever felt like that. So after burying the what if questions I faced them now want to get filled with chemicals to control any spread!! I will ring and speak to BCC nurses but cant really get my head round it yet.any advice on how you do that???My best wishes to all of you and a real heartfelt thanks for taking time to write to me xxxxxx Andie
I am sorry to read that you have had such difficult news, please do feel free to call for some support on the helpline number above as our team can talk to you about more support services which may be helpful to you at the moment and you can share your fears
When you are ready to read more BCC have a secondaries information/support page which you can access via this link:
Dear andie, I have just joined this forum as I did not even know that it existed. Your words made me cry and I am so desperately sorry for you having been given such shocking news. in 2012 I had mastectomy chemo and radio which all ended just before Xmas so I am now trying to regain my strength. For you the journey has just begun and it is very scary. Be open with every one and tell them how u are feeling at all times…stay positive and dont give in, though at times it is hard…this will be your hardest fight yet. Keep talking to people who have been through the same thing, doing so helped me enormously it makes you feel that you are not alone. Meet with people to chat, I don’t know if this site has a facility for meeting up with people but your hospital probably will. Please stay strong and take care of yourself