A mother who was considered by doctors to be ‘too young’ to have breast cancer when she went to her, 29 years old, died of the disease just weeks after her wedding day.
Sinead Richards, 31, was the image of happiness when she tied the knot with her 12-year-old partner Liam McDonagh, 33, on August 19th.
But the mother of two died just 22 days later on September 10, a year after tests showed she had stage four breast cancer, which had spread throughout her body.
The pastoral mentor, from Stanningley in West Yorkshire, found a lump in her breast at the end of 2019, then 29 years old, and went to her family doctor in early 2020.
It is unclear whether this was before or after the first lockdown.
But her heartbroken husband claimed to the doctors that it could not be breast cancer because she was ‘too young’. Doctors have reportedly performed tests but their cancer was not seen.
Her husband encouraged her to return, at an unspecified time, and tests then revealed that she had stage four to cure breast cancer.
Just one in four women survives more than five years after being diagnosed with the disease, which means the cancer has spread to other parts of the body, such as the bones, lungs, liver or brain.
Sinead Richards. who died on September 10 of stage four breast cancer, pictured on her wedding day with her husband Liam McDonagh and her daughters Paige, seven, and Georgie, 10
Richard’s heartbroken husband, Liam McDonagh, claimed doctors said she was ‘too young’ to have breast cancer after discovering a lump.
Ms. Richards initially visited the doctors for two months because she did not think it would be cancer.
But after being diagnosed, she faced an 18-month battle with cancer and spent the last weeks of her life in hospital in Leeds.
Tragically, Mrs. Richards died on September 10, less than a month after her marriage, leaving her husband and two daughters, Paige, seven, and Georgie, 10.
A funeral will take place in Leeds on October 7.
Now, Mr McDonagh, a builder, has encouraged other women to test despite their age.
Speaking about her wedding, he said: ‘Everyone smiles all day. She was very sick, but it really showed what she was like, she struggled to get there and put on a brave face.
‘It was spirit about matter. She got her there and that’s all she wanted.
‘It has had an enormous impact on our lives. She was great, she was such a lovely person.
‘No one she’s ever met has a bad word to say about her, everyone loves her. It’s just so tragic.
Ms. Richards initially visited the doctors for two months because she did not think it would be cancer
Mr McDonagh said: ‘If her story helps one more person to be checked, this will all have been worth the effort. She was the most amazing person ‘
‘When we were in the hospital, people would give us a second look because they could not believe how young we were. She was only 31, we could not believe it. ‘
He added: ‘If her story helps one more person to get checked, this will all have been worth the effort. She was the most amazing person.
‘I just want to show that this can happen to anyone and encourage people to check in if they ever notice anything.’
A fundraiser has been launched on GoFundMe to support the family and help with the cost of a funeral that will take place on October 7th.
A day at a local pub and a canal ride from Leeds to Liverpool have been organized in fundraising – and so far more than £ 3,000 has been raised.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK and almost all women survive five years or more (98 per cent) if it is caught in stage one.
But if it is not caught early enough and develops to stage four, only 25 percent will survive more than five years after being diagnosed.
Once stage four reaches, the cancer is no longer cured, but can be controlled with treatment, such as hormone therapy or chemotherapy.
How to control your breasts – and what to look for
By Liz O’Riordan Breast Surgeon and Breast Cancer Survivor
The most obvious sign may be a lump, either in the chest or high in the armpit. It can be visible, if only clear when you feel it. But other signs include dimming of the skin on the breast, an inverted nipple or bleeding from the nipple. A red rash can also be an indication of an underlying problem.
HOW TO CHECK The best time is in your period when the balance of hormones means that the tissue will naturally be less lumpy and painful. If you are postmenopausal, every moment is fine, although most women find that checking in on the first of the month is a good way to remember.
- Stand topless in front of a mirror and check your breasts up, and then from each side. If your breasts are large, lift them up and check the skin underneath.
- Lift your hands above your head and look again – do they look different?
- Put your hands on your hips and tense your chest muscles and check it again.
- Read to feel your breasts and, with the flat surface of your fingers, press down on the breast tissue. Feel your entire chest, in a circular motion from your cleavage to your armpit.
- Also check in the armpit itself, pressing the skin and fat against your rib cage.
- If you find a lump anywhere, check the opposite breast or armpit – chances are it will feel the same.
- If you are worried about something you have found, check back in two weeks. If it is still there, have it checked by a doctor.