A mother-of-two from Co Kildare has detailed how she underwent a double mastectomy to give herself the 'best chance at life' as she praised the Irish Cancer Society for its support as the charity marks Daffodil Day today.
Sarah Thompson, 54, is from Maynooth in Co Kildare and she was diagnosed with breast cancer in June 2015 and just five months later in November she was given the dreaded news that she had also tested positive for BRCA1 - identifying cancer susceptibility in her genes.
“I had a double mastectomy and there were so many options available in terms of reconstruction. I benefited from the Irish Cancer Society’s nurse line, who told me about different reconstructions but I wanted to know from another woman who’d been through this," Sarah told Independent.ie
Sarah gave her details to the Irish Cancer Society and they set about finding another patient who’d had the reconstruction she’d been interested in exploring, and soon Sarah was put in contact with someone who helped her to make her decision.
“Because of the genetic test, I found out the risk of ovarian and breast cancer was increased with the gene, so I elected to have that surgery to lower my risk. They (doctors) never say your risk is zero but it’s a small risk and anything else was too big for me. I wanted normality, to be back at work, to resume my life and I was guided every step of the way when I asked for help. But nothing happens all at once, you have time to process and time to recover after each procedure," she said.
After successful treatment, a year and 10 months later Sarah is back doing the job she loves working as a Boots store operations support manager. She also praised Boots for its special range of beauty products which are designed to help women feel beautiful during their cancer journey.
Sarah has praised her loving family including husband Seamus, also 54, and her two grown ups sons James and David as well as her friends with supporting her on the road to recovery as she underwent treatment.
She said: “My husband, my sons, my family and friends, were amazing - they really stepped up to the plate and they were there for the good days as well as the bad. I made the best choices for life and the advice and support I received were invaluable."
For more information about the Irish Cancer Society's Daffodil Day fundraising appeal, visit cancer.ie
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