max temp: 11°C

min temp: 8°C


If I hadn’t lost weight I wouldn’t have discovered my cancer until it was too late – slimmer says decision to drop dress size saved her life

16:21 22 November 2012

Fiona Welsh was diagnosed with cancer after finding a lump on her breast. She only discovered the lump after loosing weight and says that saved her life. She now wants to encourage other women to check for lumps.

Fiona Welsh was diagnosed with cancer after finding a lump on her breast. She only discovered the lump after loosing weight and says that saved her life. She now wants to encourage other women to check for lumps.


Fiona Welsh on her battle against breast cancer


FIONA Welsh has become a firm believer in fate – and she’s confident it’s on her side.

But she says it was only her decision to lose weight which led to her discovery of the lump in her left breast.

“It is fate that I discovered this from losing weight,” said the dental nurse. “I feel incredibly lucky – who knows what could have happened had I not have found that lump?”

Miss Welsh, who works at Community Dental Services in Hawthorn Drive, Ipswich, was diagnosed with cancer of the breast’s milk duct – ductal carcinoma. She began chemotherapy on Monday having previously undergone a mastectomy, to remove the cancerous area in her breast, and re-constructive surgery.

Miss Welsh decided to lose weight in January after she made dropping her dress size a new year’s resolution.

She joined Slimming World’s group at Pinewood Community Centre on January 4 and within six weeks she had lost about seven pounds. It was at that point that she discovered the lump.

But Miss Welsh, who lives in Sycamore Close, Ipswich, thought it was a cyst and didn’t go to the doctors immediately because she was concentrating on an exam she was due to sit. When she eventually sought medical advice, she was dealt the devastating news.

“If I hadn’t have started losing weight then the future would have been really bleak for me,” she said. “If I hadn’t have lost the weight I honestly don’t believe I would have found out I had cancer until it was too late.

“I feel immensely grateful for the fact that I went to Slimming World and that it was found through me losing weight.”

On May 15, Miss Welsh had a mastectomy and re-constructive surgery.

As she continues her recovery from the operation, which took place at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, she now faces four bouts of chemotherapy. Before starting her treatment she had her embryos frozen so she would be able to have children in the future.

And despite her own battle with the disease, she is determined to raise awareness of the importance of women checking themselves for lumps.

“If you find a lump or if you’re concerned about anything, just go and get yourself checked,” she said.

Send your messages of support to Fiona care of Hollie-Rae Merrick, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or send an e-mail to hollie-rae.merrick@archant.co.uk



Matt Bunn joined the Ipswich Round Table's annual Rudolph Run.

The festive lights have been switched on in the middle of Ipswich and – before we know it – Rudolph and Father Christmas will be spreading their magic around town.

Fears were raised over the impact the strikes would have on A&E departments.

Strike action by thousands of junior doctors has been suspended so talks can continue, the Government and the British Medical Association (BMA) have announced.

The Christmas Tree on the Cornhill in 1985,  Grimwades was on the right of the picture

As the festive cheer spreads through Ipswich, reader Janice Poulson has been looking back at how the town used to be at Christmas, and other times of the year.

Michael Leaberry

Police are appealing for help to find a missing man believed to have links to Suffolk, Essex, Norfolk and north Wales.

Daniel Compton with daughter Evie

The parents of baby Evie Compton have spoken of their heartache after revealing it is unlikely she will be allowed to fly home to Ipswich for Christmas.

Don't feed the ducks this winter

People are being urged not to feed left over bread to the ducks in Ipswich’s Christchurch Park.

Ipswich Waterfront at Dusk

In a conversation published in the Guardian’s ‘Weekend’ magazine, musician Brian Eno and former Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis briefly discussed their experiences of the town, with their views not especially favourable.

Woman was caught drink-driving at police headquarters

A 23-year-old was caught drink-driving after parking her car at Martlesham police headquarters, a court heard.

Murrayfield Primary School.

Governors have criticised Suffolk County Council after they resigned from their school which was branded ‘inadequate’.

Mick Mills and Bobby Robson with the UEFA Cup in 1981. (Photo Dave Kindred/Archant)

A local football story jumped from the sports pages to take over the EADT’s main news spot on November 30, 1981.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages

Local business directory

Suffolk's trusted business finder

Property search

e.g. Oxford or NW3
Powered by Zoopla

Digital Edition

Read the Ipswich Star e-edition today E-edition

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24