I think I am being silly, but I just needed to vent

I was diagnosed with BC Grade 1 no node involvement over 5 years ago. Just a lumpectomy, radio and AI’s for 5 years - so just finished the AI

I have been having yearly mammograms and I get really worried at that time , as I know we all do.

However, two days ago, the bowel screening test thumped through the letterbox and I just can’t face it. I just want to scream at someone to just leave me alone , give me a year without feeling stressed and anxious about a cancer test. I just want to be left in peace for a bit.

I know I can ignore it, but I know I shouldn’t , but I just want to be free of tests, just for a little. Which I know is selfish as many of us here have secondaries and recurrences and are living with constant testing.

But I can’t help how I feel. Do any others feel the same?


Hell Yes! I could have written the above myself! The same feeling happened with me 2 weeks ago (albeit I am only 5 months after mastectomy and on tamoxifen for 5 years) and the bowel test came through the post. I burst into tears… Husband opened it for me and I looked at it for a few days then just wanted to get it out the way. results came back really quickly which was good and all okay. I SO know where you are coming from
My BCa was picked up on a routine mammogram and I think I am a little triggered by any screening letter now xxxxxxx


Hi, I had same diagnosis as you and lumpectomy 5 weeks ago. It’s good to hear from someone who is 5 years on.
Bowel screening test landed last week. It’s been done and sent off. My dad had bowel cancer and , if I lived in France where my sister lives, I’ve had had a colonoscopy by now.
Also got my smear test letter .
All landed and due at same time. My thinking was that if I don’t do them, book them, I’ll be wondering about them.
I know how you feel though :frowning: x


Ah yeah. Every single damn day. I just want to be left alone to live the rest of my life in peace without the anxiety of thinking about which cancer is going to pop up next. I can’t of course because it would be stupid otherwise especially considering it was a scan which caught my breast cancer in the first place. Thank goodness for them even as I loathe them. So my therapist reminded me to schedule checkup wisely. Don’t put them all at the same time even though it’s tempting to just get them over with because it’s too overwhelming. So I space them out, bring support people as needed, and do what I’m supposed to do. I consider it a necessary evil now.


I know exactly where you are coming from, I was only two years into taking Letrozole and having annual mammograms following my breast cancer diagnosis when the bowel cancer test kit came through the post. I sat and looked at it for two days, took a deep breath, did it and sent it off. The results were negative, came back quickly and I found myself sighing a huge sigh of relief that I had done it and it was out of the way.


I know what you mean - I got the same test and I looked at it and couldn’t face it so I shoved it behind something so that I didn’t have to look at it . Every time I saw it I got a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach . I didn’t want to throw it away but I didn’t want to do it either. Then I got a letter because I hadn’t returned it which made me feel both guilty and cross at the same time . Guilt won out - I have a friend who has recovered from bowel cancer but he wasn’t diagnosed until it was quite advanced because he wouldn’t go to the Drs. and it’s aged him . I’m also a Nurse and I knew I would kick myself if I missed the chance to get this sorted at an early stage and didn’t so I just did it - and once I had I forgot about it til I got a letter to say it was clear.

I’m having my asthma check in a month then they’ll be on at me for bloods / BP/ flu jab / weight management/ COVID booster then my next mammogram will be due … … I do sometimes wish they would just leave me alone . Xx


Tbh, I’ve lost faith in screening tests !!! My mammogram failed to pick up my triple neg breast cancer.
Not sure I’ll ever have my faith restored.

1 Like

Yes can’t face it . My body has been flooded with anti cancer drugs . Enough .

I know how you feel. I had mastectomy last September. I finished 6 x chemo 4 weeks ago. I’m due to start 15 x rads this week. I’ve just started 7 years letrozole.
I received my smear invitation a few weeks ago and just can’t face it at the moment.
Maybe I’m being naive, but surely with all these anti cancer drugs floating around my body any nasties wouldn’t survive. As already mentioned I don’t have a lot of faith in the screening, since I found a lump, which turned out to be a large area of IDC which I am still trying to get answers if it was there at my previous screening 18 months before.
I know what you’ll all say. Do it. I will. But after my radiotherapy x

Hi @isitreallyme
I found a lump and was referred to the breast clinic by my GP. It did not show up at all on the mammogram. Apparently not all tumours can be seen on a mammogram so I now have no faith in them as a screening tool. I had a lumpectomy, LICAP and sentinel node biopsy followed by 12 weeks chemo and a year of herceptin then radiotherapy and now zometa every 6 months for 3 years. Also letrozole for at least 5 years. If I hadn’t noticed the lump myself then I would still have breast cancer. Now I insist on MRI for my annual check. I used to think that a negative screening test meant that all was well but I now know different. I think it will be difficult for you to get answers re whether your IDC was there at your previous screening but it is still worth asking the questions. More awareness of the shortcomings of screening tests is needed.
Good luck with your radiotherapy x

Hello. So sorry to hear your diagnosis but glad it was caught. A friend of mine had stage one IDC. Four months later it was stage 3. It is possible to grow a brand new cancer in 18 months especially in the more aggressive forms. At least that is what is my opinion. It’s not a medical fact. But if a 2cm lesion can become 5.5 cm lesion in four months anything could be possible. All it needs are the right mutations and environment. It’s just my opinion though

@Jellybean2021 @jaynie1

Thank you both.
In the information pack I was given on my initial diagnosis the pink leaflet said that if tumours are found by the patient between routine mams, as mine was, the previous one is reviewed. The patient can ask for a copy of the review. After asking several times, and a long conversation I have an appointment in July with my onc.
I guess this will be to talk about how my treatment has gone over the last year, but I will be pressing for information on the chance of recurrence too, and the review of previous mam. All I’ve been told is you had cancer, now you don’t. But you need chemo, rads, vitD/calcium, zolendronic acid for 3 years, letrozole for 7 years.
I need to know why.

I asked the oncologist about annual check ups after. They only do mams on the opposite side and nothing on the mastectomy side, unless I find something concerning me. I still have to decide on recon, but one question I had was that as I’m having rads to my chest wall because the tumour was close by, how would I know if something was lurking behind the recon? All she would say is that I would just know.
I guess I’ll just have to pay privately for annual mri if I can’t persuade them.

Oh my goodness, I am SO with you. I have just become so tired of being ill. Of course we would be the first to complain if we weren’t getting offered such tests, but we are human and we just get to the end of our patience. I am recovering from breast cancer, but am going in for a knee replacement on May 7 with a second one to look forward to a couple of months later. Then three weeks ago I got told I have a brain tumour so now I have to be poked and prodded and all the rest of it to obtain a prognosis. Some days I just want to run away and play in the sun - if there was any.

Best to you.


HI Willowherb

I completely understand where you’re coming from…it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you’re targeted like this and unless you feel a tangible reason to investigate your bowel function, I would opt to leave well alone. Hopefully, we’re much more aware of what’s going on with our bodies since a diagnoses and I definitely trust my instincts and awareness much more since my diagnosis 16 years ago. if it ain’t broke…breathe and relax :slight_smile:

Unfortunately the mammogram screening program is only 85% effective.
My triple neg breast cancer wasn’t reported on my mammogram 6 months before I felt the lump.
There’s something called interval reporting which apparently happens automatically when BC is diagnosed between normal screening mammograms.
The films are reviewed as part of the governance process. I was told mine had a slight abnormality but it wasn’t enough to flag it as an abnormal result :person_shrugging:

I’ve just received the mammogram review letter. It says that there was nothing at the previous mammogram, and that the grade 3 tumours had indeed grown to such a size since then.
I’m not sure which scares me the most. Cancer that can grow so quickly, or cancer that is missed. At least I have closure that it was the former.