Breast cancer for the under-50s

Breast cancer is far less common in the under-50s, but this can leave younger people with a diagnosis feeling isolated. This group is a place for them to come together, share experiences and support each other.

Recently Diagnosed with BC and struggling with Surgery Decision

Look4sunshine
Posted by

I have recently been diagnosed with BC and have been given a choice of Lumpectomy or Mastectomy.  I am 47 and have fairly large boobs (34F) and really don't know what to do.  I also have Rheumatoid Arthritis which I take Methatrexate for which lowers my immune system, so my Consultant seems to be discouraging me from an implant.  I know I don't want a flat boob, so really want an op which will leave me with some form of boob.  Has anyone else been in this situation and can offer advice?

I am also being referred for genetic testing as my grandmother, mum, and auntie all had BC, although not until in their 60's, but this is putting another slant on the options and choices I have.

Thanks for reading.

TheScriptFan
Posted by

Hello what a lovely name, welcome to the community none of us want to be part of but its the best one under the circumstances. You will get lots of advice and support from the people here.

I was diagnosed last year at the same age as you 47. I had chemo first then eventually had lumpectomies and finished off with a mastectomy. I was the same as you and didn't like the idea of waking up from an operation without a boob.

I had a lumpectomy to start with as i thought if the lump could be removed without my losing my own boob that would be best. My nurse also asked how would i feel if i had a mastectomy only to find out there was only a small amount of cancer that could have been removed with a lumpectomy. After my lumpectomy you couldn't really tell i'd had anything down apart from the cut where they had removed the lump. 

Unfortunately for me i didn't get clear margins and ended up having a mastectomy anyway but i don't regret having the lumpectomy to start with. I had a mastectomy with an immediate reconstruction using the muscle from my back. It is 6 weeks tomorrow since i had it done and i am pleased with the result, it is a bit smaller than my other boob but i have an appointment in November to go back and talk about balancing me up. 

You can also have reconstruction using your tummy fat but i'm sure your consultant/surgeon will go through these with you if you decide to have a mastectomy.

There is also a breast cancer group you may want to post in too as it has more visitors than the under 50s group.

Take Care xx

 It's gonna make us who we are, it's written in the scars   "The Script"

Beachwalker19
Posted by

Hi  

So sorry you find yourself here. 

I think when you’re told your options or what the surgeon wants to do etc, you had a gut reaction. I was the same, I was diagnosed last Oct, had a left side mastectomy due to quite large tumour, I knew straight away I wanted immediate reconstruction and I haven’t regretted it.

I don’t know how long it would take to be referred for the genetic testing but I think I’d want to wait if possible till after that, to see if a double mastectomy is on the cards first.

I wish you lots of luck x 

Look4sunshine
Posted by

Thanks for the response, and your welcome to this macabre club (got to keep the sense of humor going).

Glad to hear you are happy with the results.  Having read all the stuff, I am now going to speak to them and find out if lumpectomy/ breast reduction would work for me.  I then have a breast made from my own tissue, and if all is positive, then I have not lost everything and had to have more drastic surgery for nothing.  I realize I will have to have radiotherapy, which initially I wanted to avoid, but now think it's a sacrifice to make.

Will keep in touch and let you know when the surgery is scheduled.

Look4sunshine
Posted by

Hi Beachwalker19

The genetic testing will take about 3 months, so not an option to wait until then, which is why I am struggling with the decision.  

I think lumpectomy/ breast reduction is probably best, as it leaves me with a breast made from my own tissue, and if the genetic testing turns out that I have to have double mastectomy then so be it, and I'll then need to consider things all over again.

I'll keep in touch and let you know when surgery is scheduled.

Beachwalker19
Posted by

Hi

Gosh yes that is a wait. I think you are absolutely right it does sound like the right thing.

You seem positive and I know my care plan has changed a few times so always best to be prepared for changes and just go with what’s best for you.

Best wishes x