Surviving Breast Cancer: Women Speak Out

Surviving Breast Cancer: Women Speak Out

Hear from 5 breast cancer survivors who share their personal experiences with breast cancer, & learn what to expect as a patient or caregiver.

No two women who’ve had breast cancer have had the same experience. But if there’s one thing that’s commonly found, it’s resilience. In Breast Cancer Awareness Month, these five inspiring survivors share their experiences

“I had a tattoo after surgery” Margo Burgers, 66, Alternative Funeral Director

Margo B

“I hated the scar on my right breast after having a lumpectomy, so I decided to cover it up with a lips tattoo – it was my way of kissing myself better. It was painful, but it was worth it. Being diagnosed with cancer in 2008 was a huge wake-up call and since then I’ve travelled to Japan and had cataract surgery. Whenever I see my tattoo, it makes me smile.”

"I’m so proud of my body” Alex King, 52, Teaching Assistant and Volunteer

Alex K WCD

“After being diagnosed with cancer in my right breast and having a lumpectomy, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, I started volunteering with Cancer Research UK. They asked me to take part in a nude photo shoot to promote World Cancer Day Unity Bands. It was part of the World Cancer Day 2016 campaign. I wanted to show how proud I am of how my body. Participating in the campaign for breast cancer awareness made me feel empowered and strong.”

“I’m not putting anything off anymore” Anita Neilson, 51, PhD student

Anita N running

“Eleven years ago I found out I had breast cancer and after having a lumpectomy, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, I discovered in 2013 that I carry the defective BRCA2 gene, so I had a double mastectomy. Since then I’ve run three marathons and I’m studying for a PhD. I was diagnosed three months after Kylie – she’s my heroine. I wrote a musical about two fictional breast cancer patients and staged it in 2014 to raise money for cancer.”

“Having a reconstruction helped my self-image” Pauline Johnston, 71, retired


“At the age of 55 I had my right breast and lymph nodes removed. I then had a reconstruction. I was in intensive care for 24 hours and a clot formed, meaning I had to go back to theatre. But even after all of that, reconstruction was definitely the right choice for me. I was delighted with the outcome and, as I was in a new relationship, it really helped with my self-image.”

“Cancer was a bolt out of the blue” Jackie Price, 56, Teacher

Jackie Price

“My cancer diagnosis was a bolt from the blue. I needed a mastectomy on my left side, and it had spread to my lymph nodes. Dealing with the treatment was long and tedious but it worked so it was worth it. Now here I am, 10 years on, with a few scars and a reconstruction. I try to enjoy life and say yes to everything - within reason!”

Support Cancer Research UK’s campaign to beat cancer sooner. Visit for more information

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