Julia Bradbury, 51, breaks down in tears after breast cancer diagnosis

Julia Bradbury, 51, breaks down in tears after breast cancer diagnosis
Julia Bradbury, 51, breaks down in tears after breast cancer diagnosis

Julia Bradbury broke down in tears as she spoke of her upcoming mastectomy following her breast cancer diagnosis. 

Appearing on Woman's Hour on Monday, the Countryfile presenter, 51, became emotional as she talked about receiving the news.

'Very quickly your life changes and there is this glimmer that the first thing you think about is death and the worst possible scenario', she said. 

Emotional: Julia Bradbury broke down in tears as she spoke of her upcoming mastectomy following her breast cancer diagnosis (pictured 2019)

Emotional: Julia Bradbury broke down in tears as she spoke of her upcoming mastectomy following her breast cancer diagnosis (pictured 2019)

The television personality - who has children Zeph, 10, and twins Zena and Xanthe, six, with husband Gerard Cunningham - found a lump in her breast last year which proved to be a benign cluster of cysts, but she had to have another mammogram this year and though that didn't return anything unusual, doctors found a shadow at her follow-up appointment. 

Speaking of the first signs, Julia said: 'About a year ago I noticed a lump in my breast. I was away on a work trip and then I came back and we went into lockdown.

'I admit I was a little bit sloppy. It took me a month until I spoke to my GP, who I've known since I was 18.  

Teary: Appearing on Woman's Hour on Monday, the Countryfile presenter, 51, became emotional as she talked about receiving the news

Teary: Appearing on Woman's Hour on Monday, the Countryfile presenter, 51, became emotional as she talked about receiving the news

'Fast-forward a year I still had a lump, and I had something called micro cysts.

'I was told to keep an eye on them which I did. I went for my follow mammogram which I insisted on having. I told them I had this pain that I could feel in my lump.'

'It wasn't until the third physical examination that a doctor discovered a shadow which turned out to be a 'tiny lump'. 

Julia needed to have a mammogram right away. 'Within minutes I was having a biopsy, that's when I knew I was on a different path,' she said.   

Brave: Of telling her daughters, Julia said: 'It was the hardest conversation that I've ever had to have in my life. I really had to steel myself to be strong'

Brave: Of telling her daughters, Julia said: 'It was the hardest conversation that I've ever had to have in my life. I really had to steel myself to be strong'

'That was the first moment I felt sadness and fear because everything just changed so quickly, but of course that's what happens with cancer.'   

Breaking down in tears, the presenter said: 'Anybody who has been through this will know that you can't help feel fear and I'm somebody who is very positive and I'm taking it one step at a time. Human instinct. 

'The first thing I thought about was my children.' 

Thinking of you: Meanwhile Phillip Schofield sent out his well wishes to Julia on This Morning

Thinking of you: Meanwhile Phillip Schofield sent out his well wishes to Julia on This Morning

Emma Barnett went on to ask how Julia went about how she and her husband Gerard shared her diagnosis with their two children. 

How to check your breasts – and what to look out for 

By Liz O'Riordan Breast surgeon and breast cancer survivor

The most obvious sign can be a lump, either in the breast or high up in the armpit. It might be visible, or only obvious when you feel it. But other signs include dimpling 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 during your period when the balance of hormones means the tissue will naturally be less lumpy and sore. If you're post-menopausal, any time is fine, although most women find that checking on the first of the month is a good way to remember.

Stand topless in front of a mirror and check your breasts face on, 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 any different? Put your hands on your hips and tense your chest muscles and check again. Lie down to feel your breasts and, using the flat surface of your fingers, push down on to the breast tissue. Feel your whole breast, in a circular motion from your cleavage to your armpit. Also check in the armpit itself, pushing the skin and fat against your ribcage. If you find a lump anywhere, check the opposite breast or armpit – chances are it will feel the same. If you're concerned about something you've found, check again in two weeks. If it's still there, get it checked out by a doctor.

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'We waited to tell the children because they were about to start school, we wanted to get them in a steady place,' she said. 

'It was the hardest conversation that I've ever had to have in my life. I really had to steel myself to be strong but show that you're vulnerable as well. 

'One of my little girls said: "Can I still hug you mummy?" and I said "of course you can, I'll need your hugs more than ever".'

The Countryfile presenter admitted her brain 'started to explode' when she was given the devastating diagnosis and she's now preparing to undergo a mastectomy to remove her left breast next month, while surgeons will also remove tissue from her lymph nodes to establish whether the cancer has spread.

She said: 'My surgery is booked for October, obviously it's a huge thing for women. To lose a breast is

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