New mum diagnosed with breast cancer after doctors dismissed lump as blocked milk duct

A new mother is fighting aggressive breast cancer after doctors dismissed the lump on her breast, telling her it was a blocked milk duct.

Gemma Corby, who lives in Chamonix in France, noticed the bump in August 2018 while feeding her newborn daughter Ayla. 

The 35-year-old was repeatedly turned away by doctors. She had three separate appointments with a lactation consultant, a midwife and a gynecologist all who told her it was nothing. 

The lump continued to grow and in February 2018, she saw a second gynecologist who referred her for an ultrasound.

She was diagnosed with triple-negative breast cancer in March and started chemotherapy within weeks, reports The Daily Mail.

Triple-negative breast cancer does not have receptors for estrogen or progesterone. It also does not have a receptor for the protein HER2 which makes treatment difficult as the tumour will not respond to hormonal or protein therapies.

"It's hard to put into words what was going through my head at that point, it's just completely crushing to hear," Corby told The Daily Mail.

"I had told lots of medical professionals about the lump but was always told there was nothing to worry about, which made the diagnosis even more difficult to take."

Corby wants to use her diagnosis to spread awareness to other new mums. 

"Cancer isn't something that new mums think about, but it is something we can get. I'm proof of that," she told The Daily Mail.

"If you find a lump then please, please go and get a breast examination because that way you'll know for sure."

A friend of Corby and her partner Andy has organised a fundraising account for the pair, as Corby can no longer work and her partner is working less to help take care of their daughter.

So far the page has raised NZ$7,436.