Just Diagnosed TN

I feel shell shocked by my diagnosis. At the end of October I had a 4inch tumour removed and a full clearance of nodes under my left arm(or so I thought) later informed that the nodes removed where free of cancer but my biopsy showed cancer. I was told that I still had cancerous node left inside, had another op. I am about to embark on FEC I think for six sessions followed by radiotherpy. Had survival rates over 10 years with and with out chemo. Chemo gave me 21% extra survival chance. My survival rate with chemo was 60% / 40% appx sorry for approximations but I was to shocked to have taken it all in. Was supposed to be given printout but the priner jammed. Can anyone explain this to me. Apologies if my terminolgy is not correct!


Hi Sheila

Welcome to the BCC forums where I am sure your fellow users will be along soon with support and information for you. In addition, please feel free to call our helpline on 0808 800 6000 which is open weekdays 9-5 and Sat 9-2, here you can speak to someone in confidence about your concerns and queries.

Here’s a link to the BCC publication about FEC which you may find helpful to read:


Take care

Hi Sheila,
Sorry you find yourself posting here. I was diagnosed in October too, invasive, with lymph node involvement. I’m having my chemo up front though.
I would talk to your breast care nurse if I were you. But what I would say, is don’t get too hung up on statistics. You will never find the reassurance you want in them. But then if you had walked into your GP’s in September and asked her for a guarantee that you would live to 105, she would not have been able to give you that!
Survival rates seem very individual, not surprisingly, depending on the grade, stage and type of cancer you have. And even with that information, each individual is different. It is a shocking, horrible time, and recovering from a major op at the same time, is not a fantastic time to be filled with reasoned optimism!
It sounds like you are doing brilliantly. Let us know how you get on with first chemo. I’ve had 2 FEC now, and am feeling fine (today!) Just take one step at a time,

Hi Shiela,
Sorry you have had to join us. But I am sure that you will now hear some inspiring stories from TN ladies. I was diagnosed 4 yrs ago, with large tumour, and 14/20 lymph nodes affected plus heavy vascular involvement. I was refused reconstruction on the grounds that I was too high risk, as he expected me to be dead in 2 yrs!! Yes, I had a lovely sugeon(!) I also checked out me statistics using the various tools, and it wasn’t good. But…they are just statistics, and I have proven that it is the person that counts, not the numbers. I am still free of disease and STILL waiting for recon, but now have a lovely new lady consultant, who is just great.
This is a terrible disease,and none of us know how it will affect us, but the statistics are not concrete, and I know with chemo, TN does much better than other positive cancers. It is just hard when we have nothing to fall back on, like Tamoxifen, Herceptin etc. I hope this helps you as you come to terms with your diagnosis, and we are all here to help and encourage.
best wishes,


im also triple neg (although my first cancer was oestrogen positive).

i didnt have any nodes and was told i couldnt have taxotere chemo which they only give to node positive ladies, however there is growing research that taxotere is very useful along with epirubicin for triple negative cancers… its much harsher than fec but it may be worthwhile discussing it with your onc to see if you can get fec-tax (usually 3 of each).

i dont know your age or your exact details but i did a rough estimate on adjuvant and tax would give another 7% benefit… but you would need to discuss it with your onc to see if its available and if you would be fit enough to have it or would even want it.

i hope i have caused you more worry with something else to consider, but i do think its something worth discussing with your onc even if between you, you decide against it.

lulu xxx