Wading through mud is worth it to beat cancer

Breast cancer survivor Emma Ryan with her daughters left Leah and right Bethany
Breast cancer survivor Emma Ryan with her daughters left Leah and right Bethany
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When Emma Ryan was told she had a 65 per cent chance of beating breast cancer, she was devastated.

She had a less common type and her survival rate was not as high as she hoped.

Race for Life Pretty Muddy at Moor Park, Preston

Race for Life Pretty Muddy at Moor Park, Preston

She faced a tough journey, but seven years later the 39-year-old has made a good recovery and is cancer-free.

The mum-of-three from Bamber Bridge first started to worry when she found a lump in her right breast in 2010.

She was referred to Chorley Hospital where she had a mammogram, biopsy, ultra sound and cells removed from her breast with a needle.

At the age of 32 she was diagnosed with breast cancer and given a 65 per cent chance of survival.

Race for Life Pretty Muddy at Moor Park, Preston

Race for Life Pretty Muddy at Moor Park, Preston

Further tests showed Emma had a less common type of breast cancer – called triple negative.

She faced a 10-hour operation during which surgeons removed her right breast and surrounding lymph nodes and then reconstructed her breast.

This was followed by five months of chemotherapy and five weeks of radiotherapy at the Rosemere Cancer Centre in Preston.

Emma, who works as a print finisher, says: “I count myself as one of the lucky ones as my treatment has been successful and I’m determined to do all that I can to help beat this devastating disease. My experience means I understand all too clearly why Cancer Research UK’s work is so important. I believe it’s thanks to research that I’m standing here today.”

Breast cancer survivor Emma Ryan with her daughters left Leah and right Bethany

Breast cancer survivor Emma Ryan with her daughters left Leah and right Bethany

Now Emma is preparing to bounce into action by signing up for Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life Pretty Muddy event which takes place at Moor Park on Saturday June 17.

Pretty Muddy is a women-only, non-competitive 5k obstacle course with space hoppers, scramble nets, inflatable slides and hurdles.

She adds: “Pretty Muddy looks like a fantastic challenge. No matter how much money you raise, it will help to fund crucial cancer research to help more people, just like me, survive.”

One in two people in the UK will be diagnosed with cancer at some stage in their lives, but more people are surviving the disease now than ever before.

Cancer Research UK logo

Cancer Research UK logo

Survival rates have doubled since the early 1970s and Cancer Research UK’s work has been at the heart of that progress.

The charity’s life-saving work relies on the public’s support. Thanks to people’s generosity, it was able to spend more than £23m last year in the North West on some of the UK’s leading scientific and clinical research - helping more men, women and children survive.

Jane Bullock, Cancer Research UK’s North West spokesman, says: “We hope as many women as possible will join the fight at Pretty Muddy in Preston. We are calling on local ladies to pull on their trainers and join like-minded women committed to the cause. We’ve no doubt that they’ve got the motivation to help beat cancer sooner.

“Race for Life events are not competitive and women can complete the Pretty Muddy course at their own pace, climbing, jumping, walking and laughing their way around.

“Whether they plan to wade their way through the mud or make a big splash, every muddy step they take will help to bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.

“ Pretty Muddy has all the fun and camaraderie of our much loved 5k and 10k events - but with an extra helping of mud, sweat and cheers.

“Our mud-splattered supporters give it their all and the atmosphere is electric as women unite to beat cancer.

“Every day, around 110 people are diagnosed with cancer in the North West. That’s why we are calling on women to sign up right now. Money raised will help Cancer Research UK scientists find new ways to treat cancer and save more lives.”

To enter Pretty Muddy visit www.raceforlife.org or call 0300 123 0770.