max temp: 13°C

min temp: 12°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


Police have released CCTV images of a man they wish to speak to after a home in Ipswich was burgled last month.

Halloween is just around the corner, meaning pumpkin carving and trick or treating will take over our lives for the next few days.

This week our iwitness themes was eerie Suffolk - open to anything that may spook or look odd.

A woman woke up to find a burglar in her bedroom last night after he had broken in using an axe.

Although the new Odeon building next to the Ipswich Regent may have been vacant for the past 11 years, it was once the place for blockbuster movies.

Everyday our readers send in photos to iwitness24 that they have taken while out and about along the Suffolk coast, visiting one of our many beauty spots or while relaxing in their own gardens.

When businessman Aidan Coughlan bought the historic Isaac Lord buildings, some of which date back to medieval times, there were people who thought he was mad.

Popular Pigs Gone Wild sculpture Elvis Porksley is back in the building after being returned to St Elizabeth Hospice this week.

Suffolk residents have been left scratching their heads after surveys on council services started asking personal questions about their race, religion, and sexuality.

Wondering if your house is also home to Casper the friendly ghost? Take this quiz and find out.

Most read

Most commented


Show Job Lists

Topic pages


Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24