I have recently been diagnosed with grade 1 invasive ductal breast cancer and booked in on 22/1 for a wide local excision & sentinel node biopsy followed by a later course of radiotherapy. All I can say is thank goodness for mammograms which picked up my cancer early. Trying very hard to remain positive & the worst part was telling my family. I am 61 by the way & I think this forum will be invaluable to me during the coming weeks and months.

Hi Ginny1

Firstly, welcome to the forums, I am sure 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 here 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

Thank you for your message Sam. I look forward to participating on the forum. I was given the BC resource folder at my last appointment which I am finding very useful.

Hi Ginny,
Well done for jumping onto the forum … I’m sure you’ll find it a great help. I’m only a little further down the route than you having had my WLE and SLNB about 6 weeks ago. I fretted about so many things, early on because I thought reassurances were trite - actually turns out they were accurate! - or I imagined that procedures like the radioactive tracer injection would be much worse than they actually are. It’s a worrying time for sure but there is nothing that will happen to you that some amazing lady hasn’t experienced and can help you with. Hope you’re as fortunate as I was with clear margins and lymph nodes. Starting radiotherapy this week - next stage of this journey!
Remember there are no silly questions so just ask.
Big hug!

Hello Kit
Thank you for taking the time to reply to my very first post & you have helped put my mind at ease. I am so pleased your WLE went well & positive results. I feel the waiting is the worst bit & i am just wanting the op over & done with & my results. I have got out my sewing machine to help take my mind of things. I am not sure how much time I will need off work after op but I am told it is 1-2 weeks. Hoping to work during radiotherapy but will see how I go. Keep in touch and I hope your next stage of your journey goes well. Ginny x

Hello Kitt
Thank you for your reply & very useful advice & I agree about the saying ‘be good to yourself’ which a few friends who have been on a similar journey have told me. regarding time off work, I will be guided by what happens after my op which cannot come soon enough! As you say, there is a lot of waiting & the important one for me will be the follow up 2 weeks after my op. like you I’m on a bit of a roller coaster keeping myself busy with various jobs (Had repair of bladder prolapse 5 weeks ago so have been off work…thankfully op went very well!). I’m back at work next week for a couple of days before my op & I am looking forward to being back and seeing work colleagues). I hope you are ok Kitt and once again thank you for listening! This is a great site especially when you have questions, which no doubt I will continue to have. It’s amazing how you can go through life with little or no illness, then suddenly it hits you! I try each day to remain positive & am inspired by reading and listening to other people’s stories.
Just about to start some sewing…which is a very helpful distraction. Bye for now
Ginny x

Hi again Kitt
Forgot to ask, did you experience any nausea or pain after your Anaesthetic?
Thanks Ginny x

Hi Ginny, I’ve dreaded general anaesthetics in the past due to horrible nausea and vomiting afterwards but I had a good chat with the anaesthetist pre-op and asked him to throw as much anti-emetic at me as possible. He assured me he’d be able to anaesthetise me without me feeling sick and he was absolutely right! I was given some ranitidine at my pre-admission appointment to take the night before and the morning of, so that may have helped too.
Also wonder whether now that you are told to have a large (300ml) glass of water at 6am instead of the bad old dehydration days whether that helps you feel generally better.
Your anaesthetist will be glad to chat through concerns so be sure to ask .

Oops - rabbiting about nausea and forgot pain! It was certainly quite sore but not awful. My surgeon had stern words with me before about not being “brave” and to take all the pain relief on offer. Don’t wait for the local to wear off completely - just keep yourself on an even keel. I was given diclofenac and co-codamol (30/500) and the same to take home. I realised on putting on a soft bra when getting dressed to go home how much more comfortable I was and wished I’d put it on under my pyjamas earlier!
Over the next few days I actually found my axilla sorer than my wound - because of the position of my lump my surgeon managed to do the sentinel node biopsy via the same wound as the WLE - avoided a second wound which was great but it did mean a fair bit of rummaging around up there so quite swollen after . ?

Thanks Kitt!!! Will try and get anti emetic thrown in too if poss with GA. My lump is in the upper inner quadrant so I presume they will try and find sentinel node near lump and I will need another cut at axillary for lymph gland sampling. Yes, the nurse did warn me that the axilla would be spree than Breast. Thanks for tip about bra! I will let you know how I get on and thanks for taking time to reply! X

Lol meant to say axilla wound would be more painful x

Hello, My Self Neha Avrin. Nice to meet you all… I have joined this community today to learn more about Breast Cancer. Help me to understand this problem more briefly…

Hi Ginny,
Hope you are all organised for your surgery tomorrow and that everything goes to plan.

Thank you Kitt. Early wake up call at 5 for 7am hospital. Early night I reckon xx

How’s your radiotherapy going? x

Hi Ginny,
I hope you are already asleep by now! Rads are going fine - 5th session today and only a hot boob to show for it but I’ll not get too cocky yet!
Let me know how things go when you feel like it.

Hello Kitt
Thank you for your text. Op went well & first thing I looked at was my boob which does not appear to have changed in shape! A bit sore under axilla but all in all feeling fine & resting at home with a couple of weeks off work & results in 2 weeks.
Glad to hear your Rads going well. When did you start using your Aloe Vera by the way. Mine is in the fridge ready & waiting. Might get some E45 to mix with it. Keep in touch & thank you! This is such a great site! I gather you have a fair drive for your Rads. My journey to Plymouth is only about 45 mins and apart from parking!!! Not bad at all xxxx

Hi Giinny, oh I’m so glad it went well . I did the boob check when I first woke up too but then burst into tears!! The nurses kept reassuring me it was the anaesthetic but I reckon it was relief! Did your surgeon tell you how much tissue and how many nodes he/she removed ?
I’m not using aloe Vera yet although do have it ready . My centre recommends and provides aqueous cream so I’ve stuck with that meantime during my rads. I did use E45 to generally moisturise once my wound was healed - figured it couldn’t hurt to have my skin in as good condition as possible.
Take it easy and let people look after you!
Hope you heal fast and the time waiting for your results don’t drag too badly ! Not sure how the sewing will be whilst you’re a bit sore but at this rate you might have a whole new summer wardrobe !

Hi Kitt
Thanks for your reply & tips about creams.
Looking at my discharge sheet it looks like I had a R spot guided WLE with sentinel node biopsy. I was told they would sample a lymph node but didn’t get to see surgeon after op so will ask when I go back in 2 weeks.
Just booked a holiday in May in Cyprus as something to look forward to. Hope I’ll have finished treatment by then. Not sure how much tissue they took but I can’t see any real change in my boob so I guess just took out the 16mm lump and some hopefully clear margins. Always the worry about further surgery but I’m not thinking about that at the moment.
Yes, having to leave sewing for a few days but will get back into it next week.
Take care & hope you are feeling ok with Rads x

Hi Ginny, I was told the aim was for 1cm clearance around the lump to ensure clear margins
Well done for planning yourself a treat by booking Cyprus. I guess you’ll be expecting to start your radiotherapy in March so finishing in April?
I had to smile when I was told not to expose the irradiated area to sunshine … I know they have to tell you but that REALLY wasn’t going to happen!