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“I discovered a lump in my breast while taking a shower. I was 33 and had just given birth a couple of weeks before. I of course went to the doctor to have it checked out. He told me not to worry, it’s just a milk duct blockage that goes away while breastfeeding. The lump didn’t disappear — it grew. I went back and asked for a mammogram. I was denied. I told him about the family incidences of breast cancer. He said I’m too young, it’s unlikely I have breast cancer. I nodded and went to a doctor in the private sector instead. That was a woman. She immediately arranged an urgent appointment at the radiology for a mammography.”

“At the mammography appointment, the picture confused the doctor enough to do a very long ultrasound of the tumor (it felt like ages) before he decided to take a sample. It came back as cancer and post mastectomy it was classified as a pretty aggressive triple negative BC tumor type that’s super rare.

Well, I’m not sure if it’s because I’m a woman but that was the biggest dismissal I have ever experienced. I’m glad I persisted in getting it checked, I was lucky. I’ve been in remission for 11 years. Oh, I also have a brca1 variant that makes my cancer hereditary. I was tested because I was so young and because breast cancer runs in my family trees from both my mom and dad.”


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