Only 18 years old but feeling a bit scared

Hi, 3 weeks ago I found a pea - grape sized lump in my left breast, as soon as I found it my heart dropped. At the time, I thought that the only symptom of breast cancer was a lump so was addiment that I was going to be ill, but now after (days and days and days) of research I’ve found out that there are many other symptoms of breast cancer and that only 80-85% of breast lumps are actually cancerous. However, I’ve also read stories of people around my age who have found breast lumps but been turned away by doctors purely due to their age and the lump has turned out to be cancerous, some of which didn’t even have any history of breast cancer in their families and had negative genetic tests for breast cancer, so I feel a little anxious. I got an appointment for the day after I found the lump with my GP who then made another appointment for me 2 weeks later (last week) to see if it changed etc. After the appointment she has referred me to a breast cancer unit but I’m scared they will just examine me physically and not do any other tests due to my age. I just don’t want to get my hopes up being old I don’t have cancer to then be told a few months or even years later that actually it is cancer. I know I sound over dramatic to those of you reading this who haven’t found a lump yourself but after finding a lump, it’s on your mind a lot. I’m sorry if my issues seem minuscule compared to those of you going through treatments or those with family history awaiting test results from finding a lump etc and I don’t mean to sound petty but would really like some opinions or advice, especially from people my age or in their twenties. I’ve just finished my A-levels and have a super summer ahead of me, I’d be gutted to have that taken away from me!

Hi Paige,
First of all, well done in getting yourself checked out so promptly As you say, bc should be incredibly rare in someone of your age, but it still needs to be checked out.
Try not to worry that the clinic will be dismissive, as your GP certainly wasn’t. I was told they would always get to the bottom of it before letting you go. There might be a few reports of some not having a positive experience, but this is unusual & IF it happens, it can be dealt with.
What normally happens is, you’d see the Dr, have a breast examination & ultrasound. If it’s clear what it is, then you’ll be on your way then. The vast majority of breast changes are due to common reasons - mostly quite normal ones.
A mammogram &/or biopsy maybe done, if it’s not clear what it is, but it would be unlikely to come to that.
Waiting for appointments is always difficult, so keep off google, carry on as normal & have a lovely summer ?
If you want to, let us know how you get on.
ann x

Thank you for your reply, Ann, I’ve found it very useful! I know how rare it is at my age, but rare doesn’t mean impossible - I know this isn’t a good way of thinking about it and I know deep down I need to change this way of thinking which I am trying to do. Doctors are human, mistakes are made, they do their best and that is all that we can ask ?

Sorry to hear you’re going through the waiting game Paige.


Have you got a date for the clinic appointment yet?

It’s probably nothing so at least I’m worrying about nothing as opposed to those who worry and end up being diagnosed with bc! Yes I have, my appointment is 4th July - next Wednesday. Thank you for your reply ?

Hi Paige1234

Just reading your post. If you’re like me and most women, you will worry until you’ve been to the clinic. The staff I met yesterday were really lovely. I don’t think they would have been dismissive of anyone as there was a boy of your age getting checked!

As Ann-m said, keep off google. There are so many all clears given but most of those stories will never appear online as a lot of people do not go on to post about an all clear. After I had googled I practically diagnosed myself and wrote myself off! My lump was large and it was a cyst which the clinic drained. Every procedure was painless too.

It’s always wise to get any breast changes checked out, so you have done the right thing.

Do let us know how you get on and feel free to ask any questions xxx

Thank you for your reply Dondon1973, I don’t mean to be dismissive of the efforts that our medical staff put in, I honestly don’t, I know how rare cancer is at my age and I just don’t want that to be the deciding factor of what my lump is. I’m sure that the lump is a cyst (from google research - I googled it right after I found it for about a week but I don’t anymore!), the stories of people being misdiagnosed have stuck in my head over the positive stories and that’s where this worry has come from. Only 1 week of waiting left now though, thank you for your kind words?

UPDATE - diagnosed fibroadenoma so nothing to worry about! Had an examination and ultrasound scan - it was quite cool seeing the lump on the screen! Very relieved, although I had already come to the conclusion that it was a cyst or Fibroadenoma previous to the appointment, just a massive relief to know 100% that I’m A-OK ? did break my heart a little bit knowing that today a lot of people won’t have been as lucky as me at that clinic and some may be told they even have breast cancer which I can’t even imagine going through! I hope anybody who reads this is fit and healthy! Thank you for the replies ?