women so young

I was dx with bc in March 09 had mastectomy lynph node removal,had chemo but gave it up and am on tamoxifen a week now.
Been looking at the sight as im new on here and cant believe how young a lot of these women are i though i was young im 49 with 2 children 26 and 24 and hubby, but a lot of you have babies and it must be so hard to cope with. Its so hard as it is for me let alone children to cope with. my respects to all you younger ones coping with young children.

Hi McGill

Yes, you’re right. It’s not an old lady’s disease at all.

I had my first primary at 37 (second at 48) when my children were 10 and 7. I thought I was young, but my consultant said no, he’d much younger patients than me.

He described it as a modern epidemic - frightening thought, eh?

And it must require terrific stamina to cope with a young family and the treatment.

X to all


I was 34 when dx in Feb 08, and my sons were 1 and 4. I found the lump myself. Had wle, rads, tamoxifen, zoladex and then ovaries removed.

I think that too many women around my age do not realise that us younger ones are getting this disease too. I lot of women I know didnt even check themselves before they knew of my dx.

Im just so glad that I was one of the young ones that DID check.

Hi, Id like to just say too that my experience is also that the medical profession seem to rule out cancer because of age and no family history, but that so many younger women with no family history are still ending up with breast cancer. It does make me think that they should take another look at how they assess women. I read somewhere too that younger women tend to have the aggressive cancer too, which would tell me that they need to start identifying this cancer as early as possible in younger women. I think they need to think up a new strategy, before more young women are misdiagnosed.

My GP sent me to breast unit within 2 weeks. At the time I didnt think anything of it, but I now realise that at 34 and with no family history, I was very lucky to be refered straight away. I have read so much about younger women being sent away, so I am very grateful to my gp, especially as I was grade 3.

My wife was dx eventually at the age of 29 in 2005, no family history and thinking back, she would actually have been 28 if the had referred her for tests when she first asked them to. (Took 3 months in all from asking about inverted nipple let alone the diabetes insipidus caused by the pituitary).

Unfortunately by the time they diagnosed the primary tumour it had already spread into her bones. (Within a week of the initial diagnosis we discovered that one of her vertebrae had pretty much been eaten away and the urge to drink lots of water that she’d had for 6 months wasn’t psychological but in fact a tumour on the pituitary gland playing havoc with hormone levels).

Anyway, she’s due her 6th cycle of taxotere tomorrow and hasn’t given up just yet :wink:

hi, bigfub has the chemo helped at all?? It is all so dreadful. My gp was brilliant, referred me straight away, it was the consultant breast surgeon that got it wrong in my case, but i have also heard of quite a few getting it wrong and diagnosing fibroadenomas, only to find later that its cancer. But then apparently this is rare … i dont think so.

I too feel it is something of an epidemic. Only this weekend I heard of two more people with it. The figures of 46,000 seem to be based on 2005. I would hazard a guess that its nearer 50,000 now. Lots of money seems to be poured into drugs for the disease but little to find out what is causing it. There seem to be so many different types, and it affects all age groups. The genetic link I believe only accounts for about 5% of cases. Certainly in my case there was no family history.

I also agree that there seems to be something of an epidemic, I’m 28 and was diagnosed in April of this year with a grade 3 tumour. I had surgery shortly after, I finished chemo yesterday and will be starting on tamoxifen in November. I had a healthy lifestyle (exercise & diet), being a 20-something I naturally liked to go out and socialise/have a drink at the weekend but certainly nothing excessive.

My aunt had BC 7 years ago, at the age of 59… I’m not sure whether this could be connected and I’d be interested if there is a genetic link. There were a few differences in our cancers which makes me a little dubious but hey, I’m no expert!

I have no children but starting a family in the future was a part of my “life plan”, and the fact that this choice may have been taken away from me is quite upsetting but I guess I’ll just have to wait and see! I’ve always been a “glass is half full” kinda girl!!!

There are a lot of us young-uns on these forums, and it’s great to share advice and experiences. I attended the last Young Women’s Forum in Warrington, and it was fantastic experience - very much recommended!!

Anyway, I’ll stop rambling now!

Good luck and best wished to all… whatever your age, we’re in it together xx

I was diagnosed at 45, but when I went to get my head shaved and my wig fitted the lady who owned the shop told me they had seen a girl of 22 with BC the previous day. I found it unbearable to think about because I just thought at least I had lived an interesting if unremarkable life. I remember being that age and having everything in front of me - moving to London, a great job in a foreign bank, meeting my future husband and buying my first home. I’ve often wondered who that young girl was and how she fared; I hope she is well.

I so agree with you McGill, I was 38 first time out and 50 this time. I thought I was a baby to be having it at 38, then started a support group and found out the truth. I just feel so lucky to have been able to get my kids up safely!
I cannot believe how many younger women are on this forum, and am forever telling my OH about people, we get a bit upset but send positive thoughts to all you young women and young families dealing with this. You are at the age of starting lives and looking forward, and its painful to even contemplate what you must be dealing with.
I’d like to add my respect to you all - you really should be proud of yourselves for doing all you do. I read your postings and I am proud of you
best wishes all round

Hi everyone

I was diagnosed five months ago at the age of 38, with a nine month old baby. Like others have written, I never believed I could get cancer at such a young age (maybe stupidly, cos I do have a fair bit of family history). It has been hard going through treatment with a tiny baby, but he has also kept me going and as it’s unlikely I will be able to have any more children, I do now think of him as my miracle baby.

I wanted to try and raise awareness about this horrible disease, especially amongst younger women so I contacted our local paper and asked if they would do an article on BC awareness during October. They contacted me to say they would be delighted, and asked if they could tell my story. I was a bit dubious at first, but then a friend said that if at least one woman reads my story and then checks herself, it’s worth it. So, I was interviewed on Wednesday, photographed yesterday with my baby, and the article is in today’s paper, and it reads really well.

Don’t give up hope, we are all here for each other.

Love to you all,

Shenagh xx

Hi Anna,

Both the EC chemo last year and the taxotere this year have helped reduce the tumour size and spread for a while thankfully. Vicky’s last cycle has been postponed until next Friday as I managed to pass on my cold :frowning: but after that the onc is going to try her on tamoxifen for a second time, (it’s what she was on from diagnosis until early 2007) to see if that helps.


Hi Stuart, i do hope that the tamoxifen has the desired effect. It must be dreadful what you are both going through. The doctor that misdiagnosed me is trying to squirm out of it by saying on my initial visit the lump was a thickening. It was a lump, and in fact when he told me it was a fibroadenoma, his words were, its a benign tumour, not cancerous and not even precancerous. That doesnt describe a thickening to me. As a nurse i find it desgraceful that they dont seem to care how much they have damaged a young persons life. They need to do something to stop this happening again and again.

I agree that it is shocking that more and more young women are being diagnosed but some docs seem to ignore the symptoms in younger patients. I was originally diagnosed in June 2006 at age of 37, lumpectomy, chemo, rads, tamoxifen, then in 2008 had mammogramm which showed a white area which they thought was calcification. Then in Aug 2009 (on my 41st birthday)- when this area was still showing they said they wd biopsy it given my previous history. Guess what, a new primary in the other breast. lucky for me it was a grade 2 (first one was grade 1), but its been caught very very early - probably 5 yrs before i wd have even felt it. Whilst im pleased its been caught so early and the mammo obviously works, i am annoyed that i didnt push for a biopsy in the first place - and caught it even earlier. If i had one message for anyone of any age is if in doubt insist on further tests.

My best wishes and thoughts go out to anyone and everyone dealing with this disease. F1Fan xx

Hi all

I was diagnosed in feb this year aged 25. I went to my GP when i found a lump and they said they would refer me to the breast clinic. They told me i would have to wait 2 weeks for an appointment. 4 days later i phoned the hospital to see if they had an appiontment yet. Turned out that my GP had forgot to fax the referral so was lucky that i took it in my hands to phone the hospital to check. When i went to my appiontment i was diagnosed the same day from results of fine needle aspiration but had to wait for results of biopsy before i could be referred for surgery. After 10 days the results were back but the biopsy was inconclusive as when the Dr took the test he missed the lump so i had another one done which confirmed breast cancer. I then had a mastectomy but again a hospital blunder (drains were clamped shut so no fluid was draining for 12 hourse) i had to have more surgery to remove a bloodclot. I too have no family history and when people ask me they are shocked!!


Hi Gemma
so sorry to hear your story - so many of us have had to sort out elements of diagnosis for ourselves - its really very worrying.
One of the things that bothers me most doesn’t actually relate to me as my GP’s have been very helpful - its the amount of young (very young) women whose symptoms aren’t taken seriously because of their age. Would be great if BCC could work to raise awareness with GPs and other Primary Care practitioners.
Anyway, I hope things are going along well for you Gemma
take care
Monica xx

PS also, I am not one of those young women either (being 50!!)
m xx

Hi Monica, i am 35 so dont consider myself very young but i totally agree with you. My cancer was misdiagnosed because at my age and with no family history it was considered unlikely. That was by the breast surgeon following a referral there. Awareness that younger women with no family history of breast cancer are getting this disease needs to be raised, with gps and surgeons. I have read many similar stories on this and another forum. My son is full of a cold, and i am scared to hug and kiss him as i have chemo number 5 on wednesday, i may be over reacting but that breaks my heart. If that surgeon that misdiagnosed me was here now he would not be standing up.
sorry for the rant

Hi All,

I have previousley worked in cancer care, and the rules were , if patient was referred from GP on a 2 week wait (urgent cancer referral), we could not process if patient was under 24. needless to say we did process, and I now understand that gp referrals need to be seen regardless of age, but it lies in the hands of the GP:'s to mark as urgent referral.

it does worry me and upset me that the age for contracting this demon is getting lower and lower, so something drastic must be going on, I think the Gov need to pour more resouces into pinpointing the causes, why so many young women are having to suffer, and see family’s suffer.

love to allxx