A BREAST cancer survivor who beat off an aggressive strain of the disease has organised a fundraising event for the hospital where she was treated.
Mum-of-two Sharon Mansell, aged 40, has urged women to go straight to the doctor if they had any concerns about their health after admitting she might not be here today if she’d left it any longer.
Sharon, of Chapeltown, Sheffield, said she found a lump in her breast but did not go to see her GP for three months.
She said: “I just thought it was fatty tissue or something but when I went to my doctor’s I found out I had an aggressive cancerous tumour.
“The doctor told me if I’d left it another 12 weeks I’d have been looking at a different story.
“I want to say to other ladies that if they feel a lump go and get it checked straight away, don’t leave it. I’ve been very lucky.”
Sharon, who is married to South Yorkshire Police officer David Mansell, and has two daughters Chloe, now three, and Lauren, 13, had a lumpectomy and was given chemotherapy and radiotherapy at Weston Park Hospital in Sheffield.
She said: “When I found out I had got cancer it was like a lead weight had dropped on to my shoulders.
“At the time my youngest was one and I remember thinking ‘I’ve got a baby to look after and a 10-year-old to tell’.
“I didn’t know if the cancer had spread and I wondered if I was going to die. I kept thinking, ‘I’ve got two kids, how am I going to cope?’ but it wasn’t so bad. They kept me going, it was a reason to get out of bed.”
Sharon said the worst part of her ordeal was losing her long blonde hair.
She said: “I had it cut short but then it started coming out in clumps. I lost my hair, eyelashes and eyebrows and I had to wear a wig.”
Her treatment ended in March and now she is taking Tamoxifen and having regular check ups.
Sharon, who works for Royal Mail in Sheffield, said: “It has been a difficult time but we have got through it.
“This event is to celebrate the fact I’m still around and to give something back to Weston Park for the treatment and support they gave me.”
The sell-out bash is at Niagara Sports and Social Club in Hillsborough tonight.
There will be music, a burlesque show, magician, DJ, singer, raffle, auction, tombola and face painting.
Sharon has already raised £2,500 for Weston Park Hospital and her target is to reach £3,000.
Family and friends have rallied round with pal Bethany Webb organising a danceathon, sister-in-law Jenny Renshaw staging a coffee morning and brother-in-law Darren Renshaw running the Sheffield Half Marathon.