May 20 2013 Latest news:
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.
BY HOLLIE-RAE MERRICK
Friday, October 12, 2012
FIONA Welsh has become a firm believer in fate – and she’s confident it’s on her side.
– Ductal breast cancer is the most common type of breast cancer. Between 70 per cent and 80pc of every breast cancer diagnosed are this type.
– Invasive means that the cancer has “invaded” or spread to the surrounding breast tissues.
– Ductal means that the cancer began in the milk ducts, which are the “pipes” that carry milk from the milkproducing lobules to the nipple.
– Carcinoma refers to any cancer that begins in the skin or other tissues that cover internal organs — such as breast tissue.
The 37-year-old is currently undergoing a course of chemotherapy after doctors diagnosed her with cancer earlier this year.
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.