Walking to Help Fight against Cancer Is No Longer Selfless. I Might Be the One Needing Treatment; LIVING LIFE TO THE FULL Scientist Battling Breast Cancer for a Second Time Knows the Vital Role Medical Research Can Play ... That's Why She Was Determined to Do 25-Mile Charity Trek Just 10 Days after Surgery

Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), July 21, 2016 | Go to article overview

Walking to Help Fight against Cancer Is No Longer Selfless. I Might Be the One Needing Treatment; LIVING LIFE TO THE FULL Scientist Battling Breast Cancer for a Second Time Knows the Vital Role Medical Research Can Play ... That's Why She Was Determined to Do 25-Mile Charity Trek Just 10 Days after Surgery


Byline: MARIA CROCE

MEDICAL research scientist Antonella Pellicoro is well used to dealing with disease at work but has also faced her own health battle with breast cancer.

The 44-year-old was so determined to raise funds for research into cancer that she walked 25 miles just 10 days after having surgery.

The biologist, who was still coming to terms with the news that her cancer had returned, was joined by her sister Irene, 49, as she took on the West Highland Way Challenge for Breast Cancer Now.

Antonella's research work focuses on understanding liver disease and recovery - and she's very aware of the important role science plays in helping people battle different conditions.

She said: "It makes me think there are people worse off than I am but it also makes me value the treatment I received."

Antonella first felt a lump in her breast in October 2014 but wasn't concerned.

Now I take every day She said: "I felt a lump and wasn't worried because it wasn't the first time.

it comes.

positive because I've "I'd had a lump before and it turned out to be a cyst and was nothing.

through before. "But I went to the doctor to get it checked. When after the mammogram I was told I needed a biopsy, I thought the result would be negative. I was really scared but I tried to be positive."

Antonella was shocked when she went for her results.

She said: "I was told it was cancer but they said straight away it was curable."

Antonella underwent a mastectomy and then had chemotherapy.

She said: "I never cared about losing my hair because I knew it was temporary. But I was just limited in what I could do because I was so tired."

Antonella finished treatment in May last year and tried to put the experience behind her.

She said: "It doesn't happen overnight but you get back to normality and go back to work and try to think about something else."

But in June this year she felt a lump in her other breast.

Antonella said: "I was distressed as I wasn't sure if the cancer was back. I had a biopsy and they told me it was cancer again." She had a lumpectomy and is due to start radiotherapy. But first she was determined to go ahead with her sponsored walk having already raised PS1100 for Breast Cancer Now.

She said: "I had raised money and I didn't want to not do it. I also wanted to do it for the experience."

Antonella, from Edinburgh, walked the 25 miles over two days just 10 days after her surgery and her sister carried her backpack.

She said: "It was a long walk and very tiring but it was good fun.

"There are new treatments coming out every day which is why it's so important to raise funds for charities like Breast Cancer Now.

"Now I take every day as it comes. I'm positive because I've got through this before. I'm confident in my doctor - I feel I'm in good hands.

"I'm one of the lucky ones and went straight to the doctor so was diagnosed early. I don't know what the future holds but I know that my risk of breast cancer returning is now higher than before.

"So now, my walk is no longer selfless.

I might be the one who needs that treatment and it could be just around the corner."

Mary Allison, Scottish director at Breast Cancer Now, praised the West Highland Way walkers who raised funds for lifesaving research. …

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Walking to Help Fight against Cancer Is No Longer Selfless. I Might Be the One Needing Treatment; LIVING LIFE TO THE FULL Scientist Battling Breast Cancer for a Second Time Knows the Vital Role Medical Research Can Play ... That's Why She Was Determined to Do 25-Mile Charity Trek Just 10 Days after Surgery
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