Tasmin Gooding’s family believe doctors missed diagnosing her now “untreatable” breast cancer 10 months ago
The family of a woman who has “untreatable” breast cancer claim doctors missed diagnosing her when they dismissed a lump in her breast as “hormonal”.
Tasmin Gooding, 23, of Ramsgate, Kent, was told her cancer was incurable after it was found to have metastasised to her neck, hips and spine.
Her family have been left stunned, heartbroken and searching for answers as to how the cancer was missed despite Tasmin’s best efforts.
The Goodings have a family history with the disease, which has seen Tasmin’s mum survive breast cancer and her sister fight leukaemia at the age of just three, KentLive reports.
But in spite of all of this, doctors missed a possible early warning sign – a lump in Tasmin’s breast, her family say.
Tasmin’s first appointment was in November 2020 after finding the lump, but due to the pandemic was unable to bring another family member with her.
A biopsy and ultrasound were carried out at a hospital but the results came back showing a hormonal lump.
Tasmin did not receive a mammogram breast screening – used to find underlying signs of cancer or tumours that are too small to detect otherwise.
Angela, Tasmin’s mum, said: “There was no mention of it at all about giving her a mammogram.
“She was actually told that it was highly doubtful that it’s cancer because she was only 23, she was too young.
“I don’t believe that – and now she’s got three tumours in her breast and one in her arm pit.”
The family became more concerned when Tasmin began to lose weight in the following months.
Her mum continued: “By the beginning of August 2021 she starts drastically losing weight, and we thought she was depressed, she’d split up with her boyfriend, she wasn’t very happy.
“She’d actually moved into her own flat and we thought she was lonely – but then we noticed the weight loss was actually quite drastic.
“You know, she was showing bones and things like that.”
In September, ten months from when doctors said her initial lump was abnormal, Tasmin found another in her armpit.
She was booked in for a second ultrasound of the tumour, but within an instant of it starting, the radiologist called for a biopsy to be prepared.
It took just a few days for the results to come back. Angela said: “We got a phone call from the secretary changing her appointment time so she was the last of the day.
“They didn’t want us coming out when there’s people in the waiting room so they’ve given us the last appointment – obviously they’re going to tell us something bad.
“But the other thing was they recommended that she brought somebody with her – and that answered it for me.”
The results showed that all three tumours that had been biopsied were cancerous. A PET scan in early October was taken to see whether it had spread, with an MRI to confirm the findings of the first scan.
Tasmin’s family discovered that what had first been thought to be treatable stage two breast cancer had spread and progressed in just the short period of time between November 2020 and October 2021.
Instead, Tasmin was diagnosed with stage four cancer in her breast, that had spread to her spine, neck and pelvis – and was incurable and terminal.
Her mum said: “How could it have turned from a hormonal lump to stage four terminal cancer in 10 months?
“They must have missed it – and if they caught it the first time round she might have been able to get treatment and get rid of it.
“Now she’s on palliative care and they can’t give her a time limit as to how long she has left.”
She said she was “on a time limit” with her daughter. “She’s only going to survive so long – she’s not got any life ahead, she’s never gonna grow old – she can’t have kids.”
A GoFundMe page initially started by Tasmin’s colleague to get her through chemotherapy raised money for her to complete her bucket list.
Tasmin’s sister Jo said: “It’s amazing what people have done and shows how much she’s loved.
“I asked her, ‘what are the things you want to do for your bucket list’, and she said, ‘I just want to make memories with my family and friends and help the turtles from their nests to the sea’.”
Jo continued: “You know, she’s blonde and she’s funny and she’s all about fake tan and makeup.
“That’s the first thing she asked when I said about chemo – she wanted to know if she could still fake tan.
“She always looks at life in the right way.”
The GoFundMe has since cleared £12,000 – well clear of the initial £2,000 goal – giving Tasmin the chance to go travelling as she’d planned.
Her mum and sister have shared her story to the hopes of raising awareness of breast cancer.
Angela said: “We want to say to girls her age – any age – don’t just take a doctor’s word for it.
“Push, if you feel in your gut that there’s something wrong.
“Always – if you’re offered an ultrasound and a biopsy, they should always do a mammogram.
“My niece who’s 21 wanted a check-up – and was told the only way she could do it is to pay £300 privately – and a lot of you can’t afford £300.
“Anybody that’s got daughters out there – tell them to get checked.”