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Women’s Stories

There isn’t just one face to breast cancer.

Learn more about breast cancer in young women through the stories of women whose lives have been deeply affected by it.

Amy, 33, has a family history of cancer and is of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage. She tested positive for a BRCA2 gene mutation in 2013. A genetic counselor helped her understand the options for managing her risk. Amy opted for surveillance.

When Cara was 3 years old, her mom passed away from breast cancer. At 22, she tested positive for a BRCA1 gene mutation. Three years later, Cara’s first breast MRI found cancer. Cara, 30, is now cancer-free. She is of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage.

A year after her father passed away from colon cancer, Carletta, 43, was diagnosed with breast cancer. Since completing her treatment in 2013, she has achieved her goal of completing a triathlon.

Cassie, 42, has three aunts on her mother’s side of the family who were diagnosed with breast cancer. At 32, Cassie learned she has a BRCA1 gene mutation. To address her increased risk, Cassie opted to have preventive surgeries.

After watching many relatives on her father’s side of the family pass away from cancer, Jackie learned she has a BRCA1 gene mutation. To manage her risk, she decided to have her ovaries removed and undergoes regular screening for breast cancer.

In Lisa’s family, four women younger than age 50 have been diagnosed with breast or ovarian cancer. After her kids were born, Lisa, 41, began to look into learning more about her risk.

When Marleah was 8, she watched her mom go through treatment for breast cancer. Her maternal aunt, grandmother, and great-grandmother also had breast cancer. At 25, Marleah tested positive for a BRCA2 gene mutation. After discussing her options with a genetic counselor, she chose surveillance to manage her risk.

When lying in bed, Meagan, 22, noticed a lump in her breast. When it did not go away after a few weeks, she went to her health care provider to have it checked. Fortunately, the biopsy results found that the lump was not cancerous.