My name is Danielle and this is my story.
At the age of 26 I felt a lump in my right breast. I knew straight away that it didn’t feel right. I booked an appointment to see my doctor and after a number of tests I was diagnosed with breast cancer.
I had to have a mastectomy on my right breast, followed by chemotherapy and radiation. I then discovered I carry a PTEN Gene Mutation which both of my parents are negative for.
Once I had finished treatment, I waited a year to have a bi-lateral mastectomy/latissimus dorsi breast reconstruction/unilateral reconstruction. The first operation went for 8 hours and then came implants a few months later.
Carrying a PTEN Gene Mutation means I am at an increased risk of getting breast cancer from a young age. There is also a higher risk of me getting thyroid cancer.
On the 25 Jan 2019, I had a preventative thyroidectomy to take charge of my risk and stay in control of my health. It has been an overwhelming journey paved with complicated choices but ultimately I will always choose to take charge and stay informed of my risk.
In November last year I married my beautiful husband Jack. I am so thankful to have the most supportive and loving family surrounding me. They always make sure that I am ok and I have such a wonderful network of friends who never let me forget “it’s going to be fine…”. I’m also so grateful to my incredibly caring GP who ensures that I am always in control of my health mentally and physically.
I want to share my story to help others who may be going through a similar situation – so that they know they aren’t alone and that there is a network of people out there ready to support them.
It’s important to me that a light is shed on the PTEN Gene mutation which is lesser known but so important to be aware of! Pink Hope has given me a platform and a community to share my story with and for that I am thankful and hopeful for the future.