Jeff Scriven is living proof that breast cancer is not a disease that only affects women.
Mr Scriven, a former removal man from Wythall, had no idea that a lump that developed under his left nipple could be cancer.
But seven months after undergoing a mastectomy and having his left breast removed, the 48-year-old is encouraging men to check themselves regularly as part of Cancer Research UK's Man Alive campaign.
Last November, he was moving boxes when a corner of one caught on his chest.
While checking no serious damage had been done, the father-of-two felt a small lump. But it never crossed his mind that it could be breast cancer.
However, it remained a nagging worry, so his girlfriend Jayne Stanley insisted he see a doctor, who told Mr Scriven it was due to overactive glands.
Not convinced he saw a second doctor, who claimed there was no problem, and then sought a third opinion.
"When I went back I saw a female GP who felt the lump, and asked how long I'd had it. When I said two or three weeks, she referred me to the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch."
Unaware the marble-sized lump could be cancerous, Mr Scriven was "stunned" to find he was the only man booked in for mammogram.
"I thought I was in the women's clinic. I was the only man there. I honestly thought I was in the wrong place."
Doctors took sample liquid from his breast and, while tests were carried out, Mr Scriven indulged in some Christmas shopping.
It was not until he returned to the hospital and was shown into a small side room that he realised what the problem was.
"Suddenly, I just knew what they were going to say. I knew it was cancer, and when the doctor told me I just lost it," said Mr Scriven.
"I asked him 'Am I going to die?' but he was telling me it was treatable because it'd been caught early.
"After I'd broken the news to Jayne and my children I had fantastic support from all my family and I went in for my mastectomy on December 21."
Surgeons removed breast tissue, nipple and lymph gland, and also took tissue samples from elsewhere, to see if any other parts of his body were affected.
Although the lump was relatively small, it contained three millimetres of cancerous tissue. If it had been left unchecked for six months the cancer would have spread.
More than 41,000 people are diagnosed with breast cancer each year - including about 300 cases of male breast cancer, which is slowly increasing.
"I still regularly check my right side and even though I can't feel anything, I will continue to check it," said Mr Scriven, who now works as a cleaner at Birmingham's Bullring.
"Until I was diagnosed I had no idea that men could have breast cancer.
"Most women are very quick to check out any health worries or unfamiliar symptoms with their GP but men are more 'macho' about this."
He also met another man who had suffered from breast cancer, which helped him enormously.
"The father of one of my daughter's friends called me when he found out what had happened, because he'd been through the same thing," said Mr Scriven.
"Nick had had breast cancer before I was diagnosed and it was very helpful to be able to talk to another man about it. Talking to him made a big difference.
"It was only then I realised I wasn't the only man ever to have it." Mr Scriven now encourages his Europa colleagues to be 'breast aware' by regularly checking themselves.
He added: " I have put a factsheet up on the notice board at work, which says 'Have you checked yourself lately?' I want men to see it and to realise they can get breast cancer. It's not just a women's thing."
* For more information about breast cancer, symptoms and treatment, visit www. cancerresearchuk. org.uk