Supporting my sister

Hi. I am new to this forum and have a few questions about how to best support my sister. She had a mammogram and scan about 2 weeks ago and has had a biopsy taken today. The mammogram and scan reported that the lump in her breast is highly suggestive of malignancy. As an ex-nurse (many years ago!) and with limited experience, my poke and prod (and the puckering of her breast skin) suggest to me that she is facing treatment for breast cancer. Being an ex-nurse is not at all helpful to me! I have been out of the profession for over 40 years so am not up to speed with the advancements in treatment. I *do* know that there have been great advancements so I am being positive but would like some advice.

She has been told she should expect results from the biopsy in a weeks time. Is this the common time frame? I fear she may be let down and told, at some point, her results are not available. While it will seem an eternity to her, I am pleased at how quick it might be but fearful if this is not adhered to. 

She is currently staying with my other sister who is a ‘brick’ and extremely supportive. However, sister 2 can seem overly pragmatic and I wonder if I could be the one that sister 1 could approach in a more ‘let it all out’ kind of way. I can only guess at the terror she is feeling and want her to be able to express that. (I know she would not be able to approach sister 2 in that way) If so, how do I convey that?


I am rambling, of course. It’s a shock for us all.


Many thanks for your time.




You are not rambling at all, what a lovely sister you sound and so supportive,  this is a shock for everyone but you will get through it.  Basically I am sure she will know, but just tell her that you are there for her whenever she needs you whether practically or emotionally. 


When I had my biopsy they booked me in to get the results a week later, unfortunately they had to do another set as the first where inconclusive and they did not want to send me away for another 3 years without being certain it was not cancer.  I had another set of biopsies done and again an appointment was made for a week later to get the results.


Sending you all a hug


Helena xx