Netdoctor & Patient Info

What it’s like to have breast cancer when you’re a man

While breast cancer is often perceived as a women’s disease, men can be diagnosed too. We spoke to Tony Herbert, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011.

In August 2010, Tony Herbert was on a safari holiday in Namibia when he felt a soreness in his nipple. Putting it down to a chafing seatbelt, he didn’t think anything of it, but the pain persisted when he got home. By October, there was a lump under his nipple, which grew to be around an inch in diameter.

“I could feel it easily but I didn’t do anything about it,” he recalls. “In January 2011, I was sitting on the settee when my wife prodded me in the chest. She said I should go to the doctor and get it looked at. So essentially I spent five months without doing anything, assuming it must be a cyst.”

While his GP agreed it was probably nothing serious, he referred Herbert to a breast clinic as a precaution. This decision could well have saved Herbert’s life.

“When the GP at the breast clinic examined me, I could see by her face that it was breast cancer,” says Herbert. “I was referred for a biopsy and we got the results on the Tuesday. The surgeon operated on the Friday.”

Read the rest of this article at Patient

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