Hi, my mum had breast cancer five years ago. She hadher lymph nodes removed and seemed fine. Recently she was having stomach pains, but otherwise was vibrant and active. After having several tests including a biopsy the doctors have said that her cancer has matestasised to all her body and is a level 4. Which to my understanding is the worst. In the last week she has gone from vibrant to looking klike he is on the verge of death. They have started her yesterday on a Gemticabine/Taxol treatement. They say that there is only a 5% chance this will have any effect and even if it does it will only prolong the inevitable to a few months. I am wondering if there are any women who have been diagnosaed with a cancer of this severity and managed to live a while. Because i find it quite shaterring to have the doctors ask me to translate to my mother that for each procedure they do, ie drain fluid from her stomach that she could die at any instance. I usually just tell her that they are undertaking a simple procedure and for her to sit still. Anyway i was just wondering if there is any hope in this situation or if i should accept what the doctors say.

Hi Theo

I’m so sorry to read that your Mum has been diagnosed with extensive secondaries, and that you are concerned that she is quite poorly now. Can your Mum’s GP refer her/you to a MacMillan nurse who can give you a more detailed explanation about your Mum’s current situation? Or maybe you might want to ring the Breast Cancer Care helpline for more information?

Many of us have been living with secondary breast cancer for some years, but the cancer affects each of us differently, and we also have different responses to the various treatments offered. I hope your Mum responds well to her gem/taxol treatment, and that others who post on this forum will be able to share their experience of this drug combination with you.

Regards, Marilyn