just diagnosed

Hi wills we’ve all been there and done it as well dont think your the only one.we all have these days when we dont recognise ourselves but hope the next is a bit better.When you have a good day you can help someone who is having a bad one and visa-versa.Hope tomorrow ia better,we’re all here for you,take care Joyce

Last year I was in the same place as you. Every waking moment was filled with the feeling of impending doom. We try to put on a brave face when we are in fact crumbling inside.
Ihave had a lumpectomy, chemo, bilateral mastectomy and radiotherapy and lots of waiting. I didn’t think I could do it but I did and so will you.
A year on the dark thoughts still come, but not nearly as often. My treatment for the present is over, and life is taking on some normality again.
Everyone on here knows how you are feeling, we’ve all cried, we’ve all felt utter disbelief. It might take a while but that feeling will pass.
Everyone here will help you, we’ve all needed help.
Will be thinking of you on Thursday.

Hi all
Just managed to have confidence to get online since being diagnosed in Feb 09. Been a bit of a roller coaster journey. Lumpectomy, sentinal lymph node biopsy. All clear. Radio therapy done. On Arimidex - now 3 months into Arimidex. Very Painful to start with but ok now. Back at work - I think what I am trying to say is - don’t give up. Honest xxxxx - there is a future. Hang in there. XXX

Hi, I too have just been diagnosed with stage 2 BC. I received my diagnosis on 7 July and have been told that i need a mastectomy and lymph node removal from my left side. At the moment, i am just waiting for news of my operation which should be at the beginning of August.

Yes there are days when i just want to hide under the duvet and not come out, but i’ve got a 8 year old daughter who keeps me going. I’ve lost count the amount of times i have cried myself to sleep, but i am having to be strong, its the others around me that are falling apart.

Reading the forums on her have helped alot, at least i have some idea now of what to expect and where to turn for advice.

Thanks guys, i’ll keep you informed as to any news


Hi Sarah,

Welcome to the BCC discussion forums where I’m sure you’ll get lots of support from the many informed users of this site. I have put for you below links to 2 of BCC’s publications which I hope you will find useful. If you need any further information don’t be afraid to ask there’s always someone who can assist.

Resource pack: breastcancercare.org.uk/server/show/nav.718/changeTemplate/PublicationDisplay/publicationId/82

Your operation and recovery:

Kind regards,
Jo, Facilitator

Hi Sarah, and welcome to the club none of us wanted to join. That early stage is really hard, but oddly most of us have found that once we know what we’re dealing with and have a treatment plan, it gets easier. Feels like you’re fighting back against the horrid thing. Meanwhile, this is the place to come to get support, get the sort of information the doctors forget to tell you and as time passes find you can support other people following you down the road.

Went to see the consultant today and results are what I thought they would be. My biopsy shows 1 definate cancerous lump but,the MRI has shown 4 or 5 dodgy areas. The consultant gave me my options, total mastectomy and all lymph nodes removed or lumpectomy and surrounding tissue and lymph node removed followed by chemo, radiotherapy and medication. I have decided to go for the lumpectomy because the results may come back me not needing the mastectomy. I feel if there is a chance I can keep my breast its a chance I want to take. Any opinions/advice. I go in next Thursday and hopefully come out on Friday with drains (any info on these because that sounds scarey to me).

Hi Wills1
I had a lumpectomy on Monday with lymph glands removed (some). I’m to get my full results on Tuesday 28th when we will discuss next steps and dates for radiotherapy.
I decided on the lumpectomy over the mastectomy because my consultant, who is also a breast reconstruction specialist, advised that the recovery period was faster and safer and that the survival rates were the same. He said 1 in 10 will have to go back in for more surgery but I’m hoping I’m not one of them. I decided to listen to him as it’s his job and it’s in his interest to get the best results and keep me alive… I did also check up on him and he has a high survival rate and has performed “hundreds” (didn’t get exact figures) of both types of surgery.

I was expecting to have drains but came out after an over night stay without any and I’ve just needed paracetamol for any discomfort - no I’m not a marter to pain it just (touch wood) seems to have been ok.

I hope your op goes well and that you get away without the drains too.
Good luck and take care.
Katie x

Hi Katie
When you were told your results did your consultant tell you you would have some lymph nodes removed or all of them? I think I have been told so much information this afternoon that it hasnt all sunk in.
Hope you are feeling ok and your recovery goes weel. Good luck with the results.

Hi wills1,

just come across yr thread and sorry you are with us! its not east but as everyone has said we have ups and downs but this site is so supportive and you make so many friends!
I had lumpectomy on 20th March and was terrified, but i have to say it wasn’t as bad as I imagined! Only had paracetemol, sayed in 3 nights as had total lymph removal and they wanted drain to slow down, came home with drain was a bit of a pain especially if you forget its there!! I had to have 2nd surgery for clear margins but that was easier in and out the same day!
so don’t get to worrried about that bit, just remember to take it easy afterwards it seems to hit in a few days after!let yourself be pampered and waited on! Good luck with it all,
love Debs xxxx

Hi Wills 1

My consultant told me some would be taken in the first instance and that depending on the results the others would be taken out after if necessary. He (my consultant) said the risk of lympodemia is less with fewer lymph glands removed although still there apparently. Hope the cancer hasn’t spread I don’t have to go back.
I have my fingers crossed!

Take care

Hi Debs
Did you have to go back for more surgery because they found cancer cells? One part of me thinks just get it over and done with and have the mastectomy. I know I have to have all the lymph glands removed which I am now worrying about getting lymphodema! If my results came back clear and I had decided on having the mastectomy then I would have lost my breast. The dilemma being I may end up having another operation if the results show further spread of cancer. So confused! its all just going round and round in my head. The consultant was very good. He said this had not been a straight forward case from the beginning and he wished he could give me straight answers but unfortunately he was unable to do so. Help!!!

Hi all
I have had lumpectomy for large area and immediate reconstruction but because they could not get a clear margin am back in on Friday for mx. Have also had node clearance - 4 nodes infected outof 23.
I have opted for saline implant so with mx and should then start chemo as soon as healed. I feel as though I’m on an emotional rollercoaster at the moment one minute I can deal with things and the next I can’t cope with the slightest thing. I have also panicked about lymphodema to the point where the whole thing gives me panic attacks which I then become convinced are also symptoms of more cancer. It does seem that this is quite normal and most of the ladies here say that once they start on the treatment plan it does make them feel mentally more positive so I am hoping for that.
Debs did you post on other thread? re your visit to Norfolk as I also live just outside Norwich. It is a lovely place to live - not very summery at the moment.

Denise x

Hi Momo - yes, panic and paranoia are your new normal, at least for a while. It does get better as you get more into your treatment, and find out more about all the variations and technical terms - like most of us, I guess, I used to think breast cancer was just breast cancer! We also know that there are so many new treatments coming on-line all the time - most of us are going to beat the b*gger, and live long enough to worry about global warming.

Could anyone give me any info on the after effects of a complete lymph node removal. I am due to have this on Thursday along with a wide local excision. I am absolutly dreading it. Thanks. Karen

Hi Wills1
I had clearance 5 weeks ago and it was a complete shock to me as they thought my lymph nodes were unaffected but then found in 4 of 23. I wasnt at all prepared for clearance so found the whole experience quite a shock but… it wasnt too bad after the initial disbelief and I did do the exercises etc to get the movement back. 5 weeks later and i would say I have full movement. Everyone is different though and what one person struggles to cope somebody else will sail through - I’m sure you will. Best wishes for the op - I am also in on Friday for mx and struggling to cope with that a the moment - it really is one step at a time.
Denise x

Hi Karen


I had a lumpectomy and total lymph node clearance back in Oct 08 (27th) i lost 2/3 of my right breast and i have a scare from my nipple to my armpit, my prognosis, to quote my consultant was ‘poor’ here i am in July having had 8 sessions ( fortnightly) of chemo and 30 sessions of radiotherapy, i lost my hair, have lost weight then gained weight , felt so ill i just wanted to die, I have cried at it all and laughed at it all pinched myself blue hoping it was a bad dream and been on an 9 month roller coaster which included christmas and easter and lots of other special dates.BUT I am still here to tell the tale.
At first after all i read about the total lymph node clearance i was terrified but i am getting better and i am learning to take care and be careful. This is a girly who was a bit of a DIY er and loved to garden and move furniture carry heavy shopping etc etc but you learn to adjust, i have had a few scares with my arm swelling but as i learn how to notice the warning signs and look after my arm.
On monday i went and had the reduction surgery on my Left (non cancer) breast, ( i was a 36 F before cancer, even my surgoen and breast care nurse said i was pushing the boundaries , but i needed to get it done and out of the way, even before i have found out the outcome of the last 9 months of treatment. today i had my dressings removed and all is healing well, again there was a bit of a worry re the lymphodema kicking in after surgery but touch wood all is well.
You are on a journey that is so unpradictable but there are lots and lots of us at various stages willing you on and here to help if we can , if only to read and respond to your concerns.
Non of us could ever have imagined what was around the corner but when its there and looks you in the eye, look it straight back and think, BOG OFF you B*****

Hug Rhian xxxxx

Rhian you have certainly been through the mill and can still keep going good for you.You put people who complain about minor problems to shame and wish some of them would come on this site and see what half of us have to put up with and not knowing whats ahead of us,that would make them think before they moan.Good luck your an inspiration.Wish you well Joyce

Hi - Just wanted to say a quick hello to you all. Wills I hope you are beginning to feel a bit better now. After dx you enter a different world and its very frightening. The worst is the waiting for this result and that result. Thinking about you all. Rhian you are an inspiration.

Hi Wills - I had full lymph node clearance as they already knew the cancer had spread to one node, it had swollen up to over 4cm! I had 25 removed (we all have a different number, anywhere between 5 and 40!) and fortunately only the one was affected (which given the size of it, felt like a small miracle!) I found this part of the op more painful than the WLE, but I persevered with the exercises and got full movement back within a few weeks.

To reduce the risk of lymphodema, I do an exercise with a small stress-ball, holding it up over my head with my arm straight and squeezing it repeatedly - I do about thirty squeezes, several times a day - just when watching TV or surfing the net. Unfortunately I have lymphodema in my breast (which seems less common…?) so I do another exercise I invented - the “Porn Star” exercise. I put a big pile of pillows under the small of my back and kinda dangle off them so my boob is tiped backwards, then I just gently massage it for a while - it hasn’t cured it, but it does seem to reduce it. Mind you, it’s got the dog puzzled.