CANCER PREVIVOR: WHO IS CONNECT4CANCER'S KATIE KING?
My name is Katie King, I am 31 years old and I found out in April, 2015 that I have a BRCA2 mutation (exons 1&2 deleted).
My story really starts with my mum, around October 2014 she was diagnosed with Breast Cancer for the second time in 8 years, and since she had been taking tamoxifen for 5 years, so she was actually only 3 years out of remission. Another surprising part of this breast cancer was that it was in the opposite breast to her first round with breast cancer. This breast cancer was totally unrelated to her first.... I feel like I just wrote breast cancer too many times but really that is how repetitive the disease was for her. So this sparked a genetic screening test to determine if it was worth her having a double mastectomy as if she had a mutation, it was higher risk that cancer would return again and since she would now have had radiation on both sides, she would have limited options if it did. Two weeks later, we found out she was BRCA2+. Double Mastectomy was now an essential part of her treatment for now and for her future.
At this stage I flew out to Boston, USA (I am English but my mum is American and moved back there a few years ago). Whilst over there her oncologist discussed with my that I had a 50% chance of carrying the gene and that I could be tested. She gave me a copy of the results and when I flew back to the UK, I gave them to my GP and said I would like to be tested. 12 weeks later I had the test, and 2 weeks after that I had a phone call. I knew it was bad news because the first thing that my genetics counsellor said was "do you have ten minutes or so, to talk?" No one asks that question unless they are about to give you bad news and talk through the next steps..... I decided before I had my results, that I would want to be referred for surgery. Not only has my mum suffered twice but so did my grandmother so I knew my odds were bleak, using the family history and what is known on my mutation, my risk was calculated 88% risk of breast cancer.
Previvor Nation is my blog, I wanted to mix in previvor which is what I am, but also play on the word so it is Previv-our as I wanted to invite people into my world. Nearly everyone with a mutation has an emotional and powerful story to tell, I am not alone and there are many like me. This is "our" reality, our fears, our joy, our love... Our fight, our survival.
I can't wait to share my story with you, thank you so much for reading.
@missktking on Instagram, @Previvour on Twitter & Katie King on Facebook, Previvour@gmail.com