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Mums Diagnosis

Want adviceWant advice Member Posts: 3

Hi there, my Mum was diagnosed with TNBC just over 12mths ago, she had a macetomy & then chemo. They didn't give her Radiation treatment as she has a pace maker on the side she had the cancer & they said the risks outweighed the benefits. Mum was 72 when diagnosed & hadn't had a mamogram since turning 70 as she thought she didn't need to as they no longer sent reminder letters.  Mum & my family didn't realise that after seventy there is a 1in 3 chance of getting breast cancer - this should be more widely advertised. Mums tumor was large - 3.3 by about 3.5 cm. When I approached my doctor she didn't seem to concerned as it was an "old persons cancer", not necessarily hereditory breast cancer because no one else had been diagnosed in our family from it. My mother has 6 sisters, there are at least 25 girl cousins & no history. There have been alot of deaths from other cancers on my mums side with her Uncles & Aunties, but grandparents all died from old age & heart conditions. At this stage I didn't known it was TNBC. When I questioned my doctor agin she didn't seem to know alot about TNBC & I have also spoken to a local cancer centre who had not heard of TNBC either. I'm one of 5 daughters & I have 2 daughters & girls are very strong in our family so I want to know should we be getting genetic testing as it is TNBC. Mums oncologist advised us to be extra aware as there is now "history". Her daughters have all had mamograms , we range in age from 40-50. Mum has also just been back for her 12 mth mamogram & they have found "something" on her right breast & she will go & have a wire inserted to find the "spot" as its very small & get some results. (does anyone know what this wire procedure is???) Its been six months since she finished chemo & 3 mths since she had her last scan, which were clear. Her cancer marker was slightly raised on her check up in Feb,12 but oncologist was not too worried. So really wondering should us daughters be more concerned about the genetics & has any one had a re-occurance this soon after finishing chemo. I've looked up TNBC & it does sound very frightening, we watched our Dad die a very slow & painful death from Prostrate/Bone cancer & this is not something that you hope another parent or anyone for that matter experiences. Thanks.


  • Tintin1968Tintin1968 Member Posts: 9
    edited March 2015

    Having been told you have TNBC is a frightening thing not only for the patient but also the family. I lost a sister to bc and have several cousins with bc. I have had a mastectomy, chemo and radiation and only once my treatment was completed did i think about having genetic testing done. I don't have a mutation in the BRCA1/2 genes but rather a mutation. So this is still a gray area and the experts can't say definately that this is cancer causing even though 2 of my cousins with tnbc have the same variant. I just found it easier to focus on one thing at a time. My priority was to be rid of the cancer in my body, get healthy again then look for the cause and what I can do to prevent it coming back. I think the trick is not to get overwhelmed with all the information out there. I think you and your family do need to be a little more vigulant but even not have a family history will not stop you from getting cancer. There are things in our everyday life that we can do to reduce our risks regardless of the genetic side of it.

    I think the wire thing you refer to may be a fine needle biopsy. That may be the test that she is having to determine if the 'spot' is something that requires further investigation.

    I wish your family all the best and my love and prayers go out to your mum.


    Tintin xx

    PS keep us posted on your mums progress

  • Sarah 51Sarah 51 Member Posts: 303
    edited March 2015


    The wire thing is a hook wire which is inserted in an xray dept using ultrasound or other imaging a wire is passed into the lump and is kept in place until the surgery. It's usually done where the lump is hard to find or feel.

    Sarah x

  • Want adviceWant advice Member Posts: 3
    edited March 2015

    Thanks for your reply, as a family member it is very frustrating & Mum being an older person tends not to want to ask questions & goes with what the doctor says, so that can be frustrating too. She doesn't live that close so I can't go to all the appointments & ask alot of questions. I also forgot to mention that when she was told it was an older persons cancer - when we found out it was TNBC the oncologist said this was not the normal cancer that older people got. Will keep you posted.

  • Want adviceWant advice Member Posts: 3
    edited March 2015

    Hi there,

    Mum has got her results back and been told its another cancer -they found pre-cancerous cells & advised her to have another macetaomy. She goes in 2/5 & they have told her she won't need chemotherapy. Pre-cancerous cells is very confusing, she has spoken to 2 breast care nurses & her oncologist who have all advised her to go with surgeons advice & take breast. They can apparently tell from pre-cancerous cells that this is a different cancer. Its only been 6 mths since she finished chemo - anyone else had anything similar?????

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