Hello! I'm glad I found this forum. Some history on myself... I am 35 yrs old, married w/ two children and I have a family history of breast cancer. My Mom got breast cancer when she was about 50, she let it go too long before she got checked and she died after it got into her lungs at the age of 59. It was stage 4 when she finally went to the dr and she only received treatment the last 5 yrs of her life. It was in her bones as well as both breasts when she was finally dx. And it never moved to any other organs until a year before she died it moved into her lung. Chemo and radiation was able to keep it at bay for awhile, but then stopped working.
I have been having my mammos since I was 30. They've all been good till this year. I had one done last week and they called me back this week for a follow up, for what she said on the phone were "changes". So today I went back in for the additional scans and an ultrasound. It was the worst 40 minutes of my life! She finally came back in and said the radiologist felt like everything looked benign but for me to come back in 6 months to make sure. And she said I was free to go. But I was like, "Hey wait a minute, what was it that was found?" I had heard her talking during the ultrasound to another tech in the room about 2 different "its" one at 12:00 and another at 11:00 (right breast). And I had heard them both say they looked the same size and something about lymph node.
So She said yes they were both lymph nodes but the dr felt like they were benign. I guess I was hesitating about leaving and she said that my dr would get all the information and if I wasn't comfortable with waiting the 6 months I could talk it over with him. I believe she said they were both really small, but I don't know the exact size. I've done my self exams and I have never felt anything and I had a breast exam with my papsmear a week before the original mammogram, and she said everything felt fine.
I've read on this board and on others that lymph nodes can be nothing at all, infection for some reason, and also cancer. I just don't know if I should feel confident in waiting the 6 months, what do you all think? And also since there was 2 of them and not just one, would that be worse than if there were just 1?
I'm just full of anxiety and I realize the news could have been worse but it could have been better too.
I would love to hear from you all, thanks for "listening".
Can you get a copy of the report that was sent to your doctor?
this way you can see exactly what the radiologist is seeing and why they feel it's ok for you to watch it and wait.
waiting is the most difficult thing to do, I know, because I too was told that the ultrasound I had initially because I complained my right breast felt abnormal when I examined it and didn't feel the same as it usually does.
so my gyno sent me for an u/s and told me they they feel I could either wait for 6 months to do a repeat or to see a breast surgeon to get their opinion on it.
I chose to see the breast surgeon.
she told me she felt that the breast felt normal and that there was really nothing abnormal looking from the nodes they saw enlarged and told me if I wanted to, I could have her look at my mammo that won't be performed till this coming Fall which I told her no, that's ok.
if she's not worried, then I won't be either.
I left her office, thinking I was in the clear, went home, about an hour later the phone rang and it was the surgeon explaining to me she had the time to go over the questionere they have you fill out of your personal and family hisotry and that I'm at high risk for breast cancer, being both my sisters had it and grandmother died of ovarian cancer and dad died of colon cancer, and told me she wanted me to go for an MRI.
went for the MRI,
MRI showed things in both breasts,
had to have another ultra sound but at their facility so their radiologist who deals specifically with breasts can do the test herself. she did it, it correlated with the MRI and then I was told they wanted me to have a bilatarall breast biopsy, ultra sound guided, instead of the MRI guided, which is easier out of the two, not only for me, but for the dr as well.
I just had it yesterday, both of my breasts are very sore today, plus two titanium markers were put in for future referrence to where both abnormalities are, being their only 2cm large, which is small to them and was difficult to locate on the ultra sound.
I have to go next thurs for post op and dr. told me they said the pathology report won't be in till then. IF she gets an answer before that day, she promised to call me.
so this all came out of having an ultra sound.
I always knew I was considered high risk, but the breast specialtist I was seeing for years and then stopped going to him because i had so many clear mammo's, when my 3 lymph nodes popped up on the side of my breast, he told me , 'oh it's normal' it's just part of the breast" and he NEVER ever sent me for an ultra sound even though I'm high risk.
I was never told that mammo's dont' always pick up certain cancers. I always thought they did!
this new breast surgeon I'm seeing said I have to have ultra sounds along with mammo's every year.
I don't know what my results are going to be, but I do know that MRI"S have ALOT of false positives. this is why I'm not nervous that they think they see something. the radiologist did look at the 3 nodes along the side of the breast with ultra sound and is not worried about them. she said they dont' look malignant. I want to know too why they came out. the other breast doesnt have them there! PLUS there's enlarged nodes in the breast itself.
inflammatory reasons can make nodes enlarged.
If I were you, I'd suggest your dr get authorization for an MRI if you dont' want to wait 6 months. it's your body and you're the one that hires the doctor.
if this dr won't do anything about it for you, then maybe another will.
worrying is not going to help you in the least. it only causes more stress.
so to put your mind at ease, your dr should respect how you feel.
please let us know what you're going to do next. I'm curious to know as to why they're enlarged myself.
good luck to you and good luck on your studies too. there is so much helpful information out there on the web. I did some and it really helped me out alot.
that's why I'm not nervous about my biopsies.
I'd rather have a biopsy and have it be benign instead of not haveing the biopsy and have to worry whether it's malignant or not or to have to worry and wait six months to have a folllow up. the biopsy was a breeze.
there's nothing to it.
just soreness. that's all. and I am not good at tolerating pain. so believe when I tell you, it's nothing.
If you are this worried and have the history that you do with your mother - go and get your films/reports and go ahead and see a breast surgeon. If they can see "it" on the ultrasound then they can stick a needle in "it" to tell you for sure what "it" is or isn't.
You need piece of mind, waiting 6 months is going to drive you nuts.
Be proactive in your heath, take charge and DEMAND resolution NOW. No need to wait 6months.
I went into my OB-GYN's office today because I found a lump/cyst in my breast. She says it feels like a lymph node and it is under my nipple. I have fibrocystic breast disease and have always had cyst so thought it was that. I go in tomorrow for an ultrasound. I am very worried and concerned. Anyone have any calming advice? Thanks. Vicki
Hello Vicki, I just wanted to let you know not to worry, it's probably nothing. Most lumps found turn out to be benign. It's good that you are getting it checked out, the waiting is the hardest I know, but it will give you peace of mind and soon you'll be able to look back on it and be glad it's over.
My 2 lumps turned out to be fibroadenomas. I ended up seeing a breast surgeon, my gyn 2x, having 3 diagnostic mammos and 2 different ultrasounds over a period of 6 months time... and when the breast surgeon assured me that both he and the radiologist felt they were completely benign fibroadenomas, I said to him with confusion "what about the lymph nodes" and he said "who told you that, it's no where in any of the radiologists reports" and I told him the technician who did my ultrasound told me twice that's what it "probably" was, she even told me after speaking with the radiologist that he felt it was probably lymph nodes. And the breast surgeon was very angry at this, he said "this is the reason why they (techs) are told to keep their mouths shut", he apologized for the confusion and anxiety that I'd been feeling for the past 6 months and said she should've never told me that, because that's not what they were/are.
That was last November... I just had my regular mammogram yesterday (one year after the start of all this) and the radiologist came into my little dressing room himself and told me everything was fine, there were no changes at all from last November's or last June's mammograms. So now I can go back to yearly mammos.
Please let us know how your appointment goes and hang in there. I know the waiting in those little rooms for someone to come tell you something is so hard... take a friend with you if that would help you! I was so nervous and anxious that I wouldn't have been able to read so I hesitate say take a book or anything, unless you think that will help the time pass.
Hang in there, you're doing the right thing by getting it checked, you'll be on the other side of this soon!
Important Side Note to Everyone: Make sure your dr/breast surgeon always look at the actual mammograms/ultrasounds themselves rather than just reading the radiologist reports, if your surgeon is doing the latter you are just getting an opinion of an opinion.
Thanks so much for your reply. It sounds like you have been through a lot. I am glad everything turned out well for you.
My breast seem to always be sore because of the fibrocystic problem so when I felt the cyst I wasn't that concerned. When my doctor said today it was a lymph node I was immediately terrified. Were your's in your breast and not the under the arm?
Yes, they were in the breast itself not the underarm area. But like I said it was fibroadenomas not lymph nodes, I'm sure your's will be a cyst or adenoma too. I have fibrous breasts and they do get really tender about midway of my cycle to about a few days before my period starts, it varies month to month, but some months I cringe when I get an elbow or something from my 5 yr old.
I hope that's the case. Thanks for your encouragement. I am like you- I will not be able to read while waiting. Way to nervous! The ultra sound techs at our breast diagnostic center will not tell you anything. The radiologist has to come in and explain everything.
Thanks again and I will keep you posted.
I am home from my ultrasound and the radiologist said she didn't think the lump/cyst was anything to worry about but wants me to have it removed so we won't worry about it. She didn't mention a thing about the lymph node.
Thanks again for your encouragement and kind words. Vicki