Procedure : Double mastectomy and breast reconstruction
Treatment performed by consultant plastic surgeon Mr Martin Jones
Helen has 6 aunts – 5 had breast cancer and one had a preventative mastectomy 30 years ago. In June 2011 Helen was diagnosed with breast cancer and the lump was removed. When the lump was analysed they said they had made a mistake with their diagnosis and it wasn’t breast cancer but a benign lump. That was the point that Helen decided to have a preventative double mastectomy and reconstruction instead of her annual mammograms as she could never go through that experience again. Her family history also put her in a high risk category and she felt it was a probable expectation. Although Helen's family had been tested for a mutated gene, none was actually found, however the doctors had told her that she almost certainly had a genetic probability to breast cancer based on her family history and that there are still genetic mutations not yet discovered.
Aged just 39 she had the double mastectomy and reconstruction performed at the same time by Mr Martin Jones, Consultant Plastic Surgeon at The McIndoe Surgical Centre in East Grinstead in June 2012. The breast tissue was analysed afterwards and there were found to be pre-cancerous changes so the right decision had been made.
Helen feels now she has removed a huge burden of worry from her shoulders and can now live her life free from the worry of a breast cancer diagnosis.