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Mammogram

Mammogram

Posted by AniD on Sep 4, 2020 2:51 pm

Forgive me as I haven’t posted anything recently regarding my life post cancer treatments. I finished my treatments in February of this year. So far, been doing really well, despite COVID-19 and all that comes with a pandemic. I went for my mammogram (6 months post treatments) and I found out that they want me to come in for more testing. This time for my right breast (left breast was the cancer breast last time). I feel like I’ve been sucker punched in the stomach. I’ve been doing so well! I was getting back to “my normal” as of late; walking 10 km/day, making sure I’m eating healthy and taking care of my mental and physical health. This felt like a giant step back. I know it’s just further testing (more imaging, an ultrasound and potential biopsy), but my brain went right back to where I was a year ago when I was diagnosed! I’ve been on Tamoxifen so I thought I was invincible. I figured the chemo, radiation, surgery and tamoxifen would all ensure I wouldn’t get cancer again until at least 5 years out; especially in the other breast! Now I’m questioning everything. I don’t feel invincible, I feel completely vulnerable. I’m trying to be smart about this. I don’t have any lumps so maybe it’s just pre-cancerous cells they’re worried about etc. My emotions and my mind are not connected and I’m literally having a battle in my body to stay calm. Trying to stay positive and keep positive. Will know more next week when I get more testing done. I honestly thought I was “cured”. This is a whole other learning curve, this “after cancer” stuff. Just didn’t think I’d be dealing with it again only 6 months post treatments. 

Re: Mammogram

Posted by Runner Girl on Sep 4, 2020 6:00 pm

AniD‍ ,

I'm so sorry this is happening.  Please take a breath.  They did the same thing to me!!

The guy reading the ultrasound actually came to the room after taking a long while to advise the tech that my images were good.  He told me I had 2 lesions in my left breast, cancer was on the right, and that I'd need a biopsy right away.  I was, like you, freaked!!  When I saw my oncologist he was way to calm.  Asked me to wait another 6 months to see if there was any change because they were too small to find on biopsy.  So I waited........none to happily.  My next ultrasound showed that there was no change.  I requested to speak with the radiologist as I wanted to know WTF right away.  He came in and advised that they had not changed and were being ruled benign.  Huge sigh of relief. 

Your situation could very well be much the same.  Until you are told, for sure, that it's cancer please look at what you do know.  You have completed your treatment, you are on tamoxifen, this could be something, or it could be nothing.  

Runner Girl
Never stop believing in HOPE because MIRACLES happen every day!

Re: Mammogram

Posted by Kims1961 on Sep 4, 2020 6:17 pm

AniD‍  Your post highlighted the journey of cancer so well. Even us seasoned "patients" can start back at the beginning of the emotional roller coaster, with each subsequent test/scan/ lump.  Runner Girl‍ gave some great advice.  It is so easy to think the worse but I also know from recent experience with my daughter that breast imaging is tricky and often you can be called back.  Better to be sure ...our brains may know that but our mental health may not.

Walking 10 km a day is fabulous!!!  WOW...keep that up with other fun distraction things you like to do. Do you have an appt to go back in?

Please keep us posted.  We are here.  Kim
Her2+, ER+ Bilateral mastectomy in 2017, followed by chemo and radiation. Mack and Hannah's mom

Re: Mammogram

Posted by AniD on Sep 11, 2020 2:40 pm

Thank you for the kind words and for helping me gain some perspective. I went for my follow up mammogram and ultrasound. I will need a mammogram biopsy soon. The Radiologist assured me that I was putting the “cart before the horse”. That what they are looking at could be anything and that even considering it precancerous is a large leap. So I feel much more relaxed about all this. Goes to show though how fresh everything I went through was still in my mind. It’s something I’m going to have to learn to deal with, as this won’t be my last mammogram ever. I am learning though. I was just taken aback that anything would show up on a mammogram so soon after having the treatments I did and being on Tamoxifen as well. I knew that the stats were low for a reoccurrence so soon. Still, that’s the funny things about cancer, anything can happen. I chose to go into that appointment though calm, cool, and at peace with whatever happens. I practiced my meditation during and before the ultrasound. I managed to not overreact and to listen and practice some self compassion. So I’m proud of myself. I now know that I am stronger than I think. I so appreciate this forum and all the individuals on it. It’s a safe place to be vulnerable and share. Thank you! 

Re: Mammogram

Posted by Runner Girl on Sep 11, 2020 4:07 pm

AniD‍ ,

I am so relieved to read your update.  Good job with keeping calm and self soothing thru this!  

I hope you can breathe much easier now.  

Runner Girl
Never stop believing in HOPE because MIRACLES happen every day!

Re: Mammogram

Posted by Kims1961 on Sep 12, 2020 9:08 pm

AniD‍   Great update!  Thanks for sharing - your concerns and your update.  You are not alone in "putting the cart before the horse" .  I think we have all done that.

Enjoy your weekend.  Take care, Kim
Her2+, ER+ Bilateral mastectomy in 2017, followed by chemo and radiation. Mack and Hannah's mom

Re: Mammogram

Posted by AniD on Sep 23, 2020 11:49 pm

Well, I got the biopsy results in today. I wasn’t going to post anything, but I feel like it’s important to those who’ve shared in this journey with me. I do have breast cancer in the right breast now. But, the good news is it’s likely very early stages (won’t know until after surgery). I am also getting tested for the BRCA gene, which at this point I think is important for me to do. If I don’t have the gene, then it should be a simple lumpectomy and some radiation (provided my lymph nodes are clear; if my lymph nodes are not clear, then I’ll have to have chemotherapy again). If I do have the BRCA gene, well then that’s a whole other story and likely involves a double mastectomy. I’ve also opted for a hysterectomy this year as well, to avoid uterine cancer, which can happen for those who’ve had breast cancer and are on Tamoxifen. So it’s been a stressful time for me as of late. I definitely did not think that 7 months post cancer treatments (surgery, chemotherapy, radiation and hormone therapy) that I would be back at the Cross Cancer Institute getting more treatments. But I am absolutely confident in my medical team of oncologists, surgeons and medical professionals. I am so grateful that they caught this early. They cured me once of cancer and they will do it  again. 

Re: Mammogram

Posted by Kims1961 on Sep 24, 2020 12:10 am

AniD‍   Thank you for sharing and posting your update.  It does help so many on here to hear updates- the good news and the difficult news.

You are so right about how fortunate you are to have medical professionals who are on top of this.  As we know, the earlier the better, in regards to detection and treatment. Sounds like you have some options available to you in addition to experience on how you managed treatment the first time.  

Your courage in sharing your journey, will help so many others on this site.  Cancer is not an easy path, but we are here.  

Kim
 
Her2+, ER+ Bilateral mastectomy in 2017, followed by chemo and radiation. Mack and Hannah's mom

Re: Mammogram

Posted by Runner Girl on Sep 24, 2020 6:03 am

AniD‍ ,

As Kims1961‍ has said, thank you for updating us and allowing us to support you as you go down this road again.  I'm glad you have full confidence in your team. 

We will be here with you thru this, as we were before.  You are not alone.

Runner Girl 
Never stop believing in HOPE because MIRACLES happen every day!

Re: Mammogram

Posted by Essjay on Sep 24, 2020 8:25 am

AniD‍ thanks for updating - not the news you wanted to share, I know...

How are you feeling today now you are digesting the news and the plan?

best wishes Essjay
Triple Negative Breast Cancer survivor since July 2018