The waiting is driving me nuts… I found a lump in my breast about 3 weeks ago, I thought it was prob nothing and might be related to my cycle but as I have a Mirena coil fitted this is hard to tell.

My partner also felt the lump and made me see my GP. I was convinced the GP was going to say there was nothing there but as soon as he put his hand on my breast he felt the lump, he was very nice but said that he wanted me to be seen by the breast clinic as soon as possible. His tone has left me very concerned, he said that at the first appointment they will prob do a triple test, mammogram, us and fine needle biopsy - is this correct?

Due to all the bank holidays they can’t see me at the clinic until the 4th of May. I am desperately trying not to worry, I am in my final year of a social work degree and have two big deadlines in the next few weeks and also have got to complete my placement which means going to work. I just want to hide I am finding it really difficult to be in any social situations.

It may sound ridiculous but I am really worried that if I get a BC diagnosis that I will not be able to finish my degree, my dissertation is due on the 13th June. I have already interviewed and accepted a job which I am due to start in August. The pressure is huge.

Even though it is more likely to be nothing I feel I need to be organised and prepared for a bad result - does that make sense?

Anyway enough rambling so many questions, like is going to be possible for me to complete my degree if the result is BC. And do I need to inform my future employers if the result is positive, could they retract their offer?

Thanks for reading my post

Hi there triflemoon

Firstly, welcome to the forums, I’m sure you will find them a friendly and supportive place.

Whilst you’re waiting for responses, I just wanted to say that waiting for appointments is always an difficult and anxious time, it’s perfectly normal to feel the way you do.

We have a Helpline here at Breast Cancer Care who are great listeners and, if you find it helps to talk to someone outside of your family and friends, they may be worth a call?

Unfortunately, they’re closed today and tomorrow because of the bank holiday, but are open again on Tuesday morning at 9.00 am, the number is below, so do call them if you can.

0808 800 6000.

Very best wishes.


Dear Triflemoon

So sorry that you have had to join us here but a very warm welcome to you.

So first and most importantly you have seen the GP and been referred, so much better to deal with these things early so that is one very positive thing ticked off.

With regards to the Breast Clinic appointment, yes you are correct, some hospitals can do a “one stop shop” on the first visit. I attended my hospital on 9 March and was given needle aspiration immediately to send down for testing, I then had two mammograms and then the ultrasound with biopsies taken. At that meeting I was told I had Breast Cancer but it looked as thought the nodes in my armpit were clear. I returned for the full diagnosis two weeks later and had my lumpectomy on 29 March. So you can see that the wheels do move very quickly if a diagnosis is made.

I can totally understand and sympathise with you and the frustration and worry of having to wait until 4 May to be seen but at least you know they can do everything that day if required. The “waiting room” as it often referred to on this forum is the very worst part of the whole process. It is fair to say that you will find this more at the beginning of the process as they do all the necessary tests etc but as I said earlier it is all done as quickly as possible so try not to focus too much on it. I and the many others that will no doubt be along very soon have all been where you are today and will be over the next few weeks so use us for all the information and support you need, we have been there and are with you at this difficult time.

With regards to your degree and forthcoming job, for which I congratulate you on getting, I do not think you can focus on that at the moment you need to get the hospital appointment out of the way first. I would like to add that whilst I am not in the final stages as you are, I am studying through Open University for my degree and have managed to work round the deadlines for work etc with my diagnosis so it is doable.

You are right there is a good chance that this will turn out to be nothing too serious so for the moment I think you must try your hardest (and yes it is very hard) to get through the next few days the best you can whilst waiting to have your tests done.

I am always here if you need any advice, but more importantly to offer you support and strength.

Love & hugs
Tracy xxx

Hi again triflemoon

We have an information booklet entitled ‘referral to breast clinic’ which you might find helpful to read before your appointment. It will help you to understand what might happen at the clinic.

Here’s the link, it can be either downloaded or ordered through this site:


Best wishes.


Bump…any other advice girls for Triflemoon x

I was diagnosed with bc from a routine scan followed by ultrasound and biopsy in March. I had surgery two weeks later and am about to start radiotherapy, my initial appointment is next week. So, yes things move pretty fast and thats with all these bank holidays.
In terms of trying to relate to your situation, I am a senior practitioner in social work, acting as a Practice Assessor, and completing an MA in Practice Education. If you were my student and told me about this, I can be 100% certain I would be supportive, and do whatever I could to help. And this would have applied before I had my own diagnosis. You must be right at the end of your placement, and therefore your competence more or less decided. ie you should know by now whether you are going to pass or fail (and if you have a job to go to you must have passed so congrats!!. I know there is a requirement that you complete the exact number of placement days, but it is possible to build some flexibility into this.
You could ask for your assignments to be deferred to the next Panel, unless you are the sort of person who finds that studying keeps your mind off things. I think the next Panel is only a few months later, and when I first qualified I failed a final essay and took the job I had been offered “subject to qualification”.

I just have not been able to concentrate, so I submitted a request for deferrment on my MA submission, and this was fine. And I have followed the advice of the doctors,and been off sick since the surgery, but to be honest I had a lot of time owing to me so was hardly at work since I received the diagnosis, taking the Toil with the support of my manager. Do what is best for you. Any advice I can give about work, I will be happy to help.

Louise thanks so much the leaflet was really helpful.

Tracey Thanks so much for your kind words its nice to know someone gets it and that it’s ok for me not to be able to just carry one as normal.

It’s really great to have someone else say it might not be ok, but that if they are not things will happen quickly.

Again thanks for taking the time to write it really helps, you are so brave and kind.

Sarah - you are so brave and I hope that you are recovering well from your surgery. thank you so much for your kind words, my PE is lovely and yes she has told me I have already passed my placement. I have met all the NOS and have 15 days left to wind down. I am going to see her tomorrow to talk about doing some work from home, which might help me build my portfolio, I am also owed some toil and reflection time so guessing I could take this. I have also spoken to my programme director at uni this morning and she has been amazing I am seeing her Wednesday to go through some different options. You have made me feel much more confident that I will finish even if it’s a little later than I imagined.

I am finding I can do the mindless things like building my portfolio, but must have read the same article on complexity theory 100 times and it just goes in and out my brain feels like a revolving door!

Also In the last week I have developed really horrible shoulder pain, it’s a niggling pain through the day but seems excruciating at night my partner has been waking me to take pain killers as I have been crying in my sleep and moaning - its weird. Does anyone know if this could be related to BC, should I mention it at my appointment?

Jo x

Hi Jo,

There’s absolutely no doubt that the waiting room is the very worst place to be. Funnily enough, if you get the diagnosis it actually becomes quite a bit easier to deal with. I don’t think there’s anything strange with preparing yourself for the worst - your mind won’t be able to stay off it anyway. I found cleaning the house was quite a good distraction technique! We did get through rather a lot of wine as well…

Certainly, mention your shoulder pain but it could just be due to the fact that you’re very stressed - maybe you’re not sleeping well and tensing up. Perhaps a massage would help?

With regards to the job you’ve accepted, if you have a cancer diagnosis you’re actually covered under the Equality Act 2010 (previously the Disability Discrimination Act), so I doubt that they could use it to withdraw a job offer although it might depend on whether you’ve signed anything or not. I’m not sure about that point though - maybe someone more knowledgeable than me could comment!

Keeping everything crossed for you that it isn’t BC, but if you do get the diagnosis remember that we’re all here for you and BCC themselves are brilliant!

Good luck,

Jane xxx

Thanks Jane

your support really helps, I have distracted myself today with all the mindless little bits of my portfolio for uni, they take ages but require little brain power- I realised I had been at it for four hours without a break.

Thanks for the Equality Act pointer I will have a good read through it.

Shoulder is still painful, was thinking acupuncture. I am a bit odd and don’t really like massages I find the close physical contact quite difficult without knowing someone.

thanks again Jane I hope you have enjoyed the sunshine xx

Hi Jo. No, not brave at all. Been scared to death from my first call back, and as I admitted on another post I nearly fled from the surgery in flapping robe and surgical socks! Only the thought of being dragged back by my kids and partner kept me in the anaesthetists room. But I am counting myself very lucky that the horrible thing was picked up early and that compared to others, I am in a very lucky position. I was trying my best to be prepared for the worst - not sure whether I had managed it, but like others have said, I felt confident that I would have been able to find support on here. I will keep everything crossed for you that you also have good results.

To be honest, bc or none, I could probably read complexity theory 100 times and still be none the wiser so well done for even trying!