A mum has shared her inspirational story about her struggle with breast cancer following a misdiagnosis from doctors.
Vickie McHugh first noticed a lump in her right breast after the premature birth of her daughter. Despite undergoing a scan, it was dismissed as a cyst caused by a blocked milk duct from expressing.
Although the 34-year-old had fluid drained from the cyst a number of times, it was only when a specialist agreed to surgically remove the lump that Vicky learnt her symptoms had been a sign of something far more serious – she had stage three breast cancer.
‘[The diagnosis] was just one month after Olivia’s first birthday and I was terrified I wouldn’t see her grow up,’ Vickie told the Mirror.
[instagram] https://www.instagram.com/p/BZmYi_0A4Ag/?taken-by=vickies_breast_cancer_story [/instagram] Vickie was booked to have a single mastectomy but ended up having to have both breasts removed after she tested positive for the BRCA2 gene hours before the surgery.
‘My specialist phoned me and said I needed to come into hospital immediately, I knew then that they had got the results for the gene and it was bad news,’ she continued.
‘They said I was not going to have the operation and I was going to get a double mastectomy. I was relieved that I would get both [breasts] removed because I wouldn’t have to worry about whether the cancer would come back. That would keep me up at night.’
[instagram] https://www.instagram.com/p/Bcfx-Y5AbuE/?taken-by=vickies_breast_cancer_story [/instagram] Vickie will have more surgery to have her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed next year because she’s desperate to spend time with her little girl.
‘I want to be here,’ she said.
‘I want to move on with my life and enjoy the time I have with Olivia. Obviously, I would have loved more children but Olivia is my priority.’
Keen to inspire others who are battling with the disease to remain positive, Vickie has set up an Instagram profile to document her journey.
In a recent post shared to her account, Vickie informed her followers that she’s just completed her final round of chemotherapy.
[instagram] https://www.instagram.com/p/BgOj-dEH4fx/?taken-by=vickies_breast_cancer_story [/instagram] ‘I can’t believe my chemo journey is now over!! 6 cycles done over 5 months!! Wow!!…. I had to have my bloods redone when I arrived as my haemoglobin levels were low following my bloods on Friday,’ she said.
‘Luckily they had increased and chemo could go ahead today, but I have been booked in for another blood test next Tuesday and if they are low again I will be having a blood transfusion. Chemo was done without any issues and I was in and out within a couple of hours!’
The post struck a chord with users of the social networking site, with one saying: ‘Well done so pleased for you.’
‘Brilliant news. And you’re so talented too. Thank god for the NHS,’ another added.
You should see a GP if you notice: a lump in your breast or armpit; any other unusual changes in your breasts – such as the nipple turning inwards, dimpled skin or bloodstained nipple discharge.