Centerville, Utah – Chrissy Turner, an 8-year-old girl from Centerville, Utah, has been diagnosed with a rare form of breast cancer.

Secretory carcinoma only affects 1 in a million but is “very treatable”, as Chrissy Turner’s doctor Brian Bucher told The Guardian.

“I was scared to figure out what it was,” Chrissy told ABC TV in an interview. “But I knew I could fight it off and I hope that I can fight it off.”

“She was always making us laugh and she’s got the wit of someone far beyond her age,” says Annette Turner, Chrissy's mom. Photo:
“She was always making us laugh and she’s got the wit of someone far beyond her age,” says Annette Turner, Chrissy’s mom. Photo:

Chrissy’s mother Annette Turner told ABC News that the girl had found the tumor herself. She came to her and her husband Troy Turner one Sunday afternoon to tell them she had been scared for a while because of the lump. They visited the doctor and on November 9th and were shocked when they knew about the rare diagnosis.

Dr. Bucher explained that Chrissy will have to go through a mastectomy to cut out all of her remaining breast tissue. The procedure, scheduled for early December, will prevent the cancer from returning to the little girl’s body.

Both Annette and Troy Turner are cancer survivors. She, a personal trainer and holistic life coach, suffered from cervical cancer and Troy, a Desert Storm veteran who works at Hill Air Force Base, is currently fighting a Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma relapse –which first appeared when Chrissy was a baby. Annette expressed how afraid they always were of the cancer coming back and recalled that their baby girl had been their ‘therapy’ by always making them laugh.

Chrissy is one of the youngest diagnosed with such a rare form of breast cancer. They youngest ever was a three-year-old Korean girl, who went through surgery after a chest growth was found.

The Turner family, along with family and friends, have launched a GoFundMe campaign to help afford medical costs, as Chrissy will need continuing medical care and monitoring. A Facebook page has also been set up to raise awareness of the little girl’s cancer battle.

Breast cancer in America

Early detection is key for young women, since tumors may be more aggressive and therefore less responsive to treatment than in women over 40, as made known by the American Cancer Society. Every three minutes a woman in the United States is diagnosed with breast cancer.

According to the National Breast Cancer Foundation Inc., one in eight women (230,000 each year) in the U.S. will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime, as it is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women. It is also the second leading cause of cancer death in women, and every year an estimated of 40,000 will die of it.

Even though breast cancer among men is unusual, about 2,350 men will get the disease and approximately 440 will die each year. To date, more than 2.9 million breast cancer survivors are alive in the U.S.

Source: ABC News