Mum just diagnosed

Mum just diagnosed

Mum just diagnosed I have a started this thread for new user Gill

Kind Regards
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Breast Cancer Care

Hello to you all.

Ive been reading everything I can get my hands on and you all sound so incredibly brave and positive.

I took my Mum for a mammogram this week as she had a lump that was painful - neither of us expected the diagnosies of cancer, so we are both shocked, although she is taking it very well at the age of 84 (quite a spritly 84 I should say although lives on her own and drives a car. But does have other health issues, heart and blood pressure problems, osteoprosis and arthritis)

Mum also had a ultra sound and biopsy done (5 times because they couldn’t get it right!) and we have to go back on 5th Jan for results. What results Im not sure? They have then said she will have to go onto surgery, removing lump and glands under arm followed by radiation therapy in a few weeks time.

I guess at this stage we dont know if its spread or anything - how long do we have to wait to find out? Should I take out a loan and pay for her to go private, Im not well off and couldn’t afford it without a loan? Would it make any difference? How can I best support her apart from being there for her?

Sorry for so many questions my mind is doing overtime.


Gill your Mum will be better off with the NHS. Don’t even think about loans etc. You will find better uses for money as/when your Mum needs extra help.
You know the worst already but if you want to know more phone hosp after Xmas and ask to speak to the secretary of whoever ordered the mammogram and ask for the report to be read to you.
The statutory max time wait for op is 28 days but it’s sticky after Xmas both in private sector and NHS. Push for ASAP.
Next time your Mum sees the surgeon he’ll tell her [if not ask] about further tests, op dates etc. It’s always good to have a caring, questioning relative at consultations.
Best support if you can’t be with your Mum is being always available as a comforting ear. Try to keep her spirits up and keep her feeling loved.
Best wishes, dilly

Results/private treatment Hi Gill,

I agree with dilly - don’t go the private route, your Mum should get the best ever treatment under the NHS, as I did. It is a top priority in the NHS these days.

When I was dx, in 2003, with invasive ductal cancer, there were many women in my ward (all bc patients) a lot older than me, I was 58 yrs old at the time. The older women were advised to have a mastectomy, and unusually, no rads. When patients are older, the cancer is usually slow growing. I think your Mum will be fine with the suggested treatment. Just be there for her as much as you can.

Hope 2007 is better for you.
Love. Liz.

Hi, I was on executive level BUPA for years, but it lapsed before I was diagnosed with this (I used to work in London and the BUPA came via an employer). My only previous experience of hospitals was in the private sector.

Since my diagnosis I have not been able to fault the NHS. Everything has been dealt with as a matter of urgency and in a totally professional manner; I have been very impressed as we only seem to ever be fed the negative aspects of the NHS by the media. I am certain your mother will be well cared for and treated with compassion.

Re:Mum just diagnosied Thank you all for your reassuring replies and was so glad to hear you all say the NHS is good for treating BC.

Do any of you know what the operation is like to have lump and lymph glands removed? From what Ive read they send you home after 1-2 nights with drains still in and Im worried as Mum lives on her own?

Is it best to go with such an op or to push for breast removal?

Thanks so much for your kind responses.


When I was in hospital there was an 85 year old lady oppisite me. She was treated really well and with the upmost respect. She was told that a district nurse will come round at the weekend (we all got out on Friday) to check her drains, she came back to hospital on the monday to have her drains taken out. I agree with all the other ladies on here the NHS is definatly the best way to go.
Have a great Christmas,
Em xx

Gill I was sent home early after 3 nights wth drains in at 72- carried them around in a Sainsbury’s bag until they came out! Perfectly survivable-make sure GP knows Mum is out with drains in and District Nurse should visit until drains out.
If fluid accumulates after drains out contact GP and surgeon.
The br surgeon will say which op is best for your Mum- don’t worry.
See if you can all manage to enjoy Xmas in spite of bleak midwinter time for you all, best wishes, dilly

Your Mum Gill, I don’t know where your Mum is being treated, but I was treated at Derriford Hospital, Plymouth, which is a centre of excellence for breast care and I cannot fault them for my treatment.

I had a lumpectomy and sample node removal first - 2 of the nodes were positive, and I had one drain in the breast. I was in for 4 nights, until the drain was removed. I had to go back a month later for total node removal, and although it should have been some 2 nights, I was in for 6, with two drains this time.These were drains that went into a bottle held in a fabric bag. Their protocol was you had to be draining something less than 15 mls (about a tablespoon) before they would remove the drains and discharge you. I was quite happy with the situation. Rather be in hospital, with all their phenomenal resources than be stuck here in Cornwall, a one and half hour’s drive away.

I still came home with a portable type of drain with a cap, that I had to drain myself, luckily had a neighbour who was an ex- matron and she came in each day and helped me sort it out. It was like a large rubber band aid, that held a short tube and cap. Really easy to cope with. If your Mum has to go through this and can’t either do it for herself each day, you should ask for the District Nurse to come and do it for her. She should be fine.

Hope all goes well,
love, Liz.