Mum diagnosed with breast cancer after finding lump - but then gets devastating news

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Health-conscious Helen Copping always made sure to check her breasts for any lumps or bumps. -Credit:Helen Copping

Health-conscious Helen Copping, 45, from the Milnrow area of Rochdale, always made sure to regularly check her breasts for any lumps or bumps. She usually examined herself in the shower and had never discovered anything sinister before.

However, one day while lying down, she felt a tiny lump on her left side. Helen decided to visit her doctor and was fast-tracked to a local clinic for a mammogram X-ray. Tragically, just two days later, at the age of 37, Helen was diagnosed with breast cancer. "It was awful," she told the Manchester Evening News.

"You know when you see the adverts, and they go quiet and can't hear anything or people talking around them, it's very true. There's no history of breast cancer in my family, I was 37 and had no symptoms. It was just an absolute fluke how I found the lump. It was other-worldly. It's like it's not really happening, like it's a dream."

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Following her diagnosis in September 2016, Helen underwent surgery before starting chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment. Once her sessions were over, Helen was given medication to take and stayed in remission for five years. But her life would be thrown into turmoil once more when she fell and hurt her hip while out walking her dogs.

Helen, a hairdresser, suffered from pain for approximately five months before deciding to consult a doctor. An X-ray revealed a hole in her pelvic area, leading to further tests. Heartbreakingly, additional scans disclosed that the mum had incurable secondary cancer in her liver.

"I fell off a curb and hit my hip," Helen shared. "For around four to five months, I was just trying to work through it. Five years on, I felt safe because I was over the danger zone."

She added: "It was aching and I was a bit sore, but I never thought about secondary breast cancer because I had an injury.

"From then on, I was referred for treatment and told it wasn't curable, it was just a case of trying to control it and hope some of the treatments may work for longer."

Despite undergoing seven different types of treatment, none were successful in halting the cancer's progression. A private scan chillingly revealed that 80 per cent of her liver is now riddled with tumours.

"None of the treatments are working," she confessed. "Originally finding out it had spread was quite scary, but knowing I had treatments at the beginning was what I focused on. I took it one day at a time.

"The most scary thing for me was going to a doctor in Germany and having a 3D MRI scan which showed 80 per cent of my liver has tumours in it so I have a 20 per cent healthy liver. It's hard to know this is probably the thing that's going to end your life it's terminal and life-limiting.

"You just have to hope the next treatment will help you and push it back. It's really hard; there's nothing easy about it. You don't ever not think about it. It's the first thing you think about when you wake up. When you wake up in the morning, for a minute you forget, then you're hit by that dread. But I've always tried to stay positive and happy."

With her options now dwindling, Helen hopes to seek private treatment in Germany in a brave attempt to extend her life as long as possible. The courageous mum aims to raise £5,000 to cover the costs of her treatment, flights, hotel stays and additional medications required to support her organs and immune system.