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Denise223
10-23-2006, 09:32 AM
Hi Everyone!

A few weeks ago I had a mammogram. I received a call 2 days later saying that there was "density in the left breast", which wasn't there on last years mammogram. So, I was asked to come in again. (I'll be 46 next month).

I went in a couple of days later. I saw my mammogram picture, and they had circled the "suspect whitish area" in black marker.

The tech took 3 pictures, explaining to me that "it's probably nothing", then I went out to the waiting area.
I was called back in -- the "density" was still there, so....the tech took 2 more pictures. Back to the waiting area.
And, again, I had to have more pictures taken -- The tech told me the radiologist wanted another couple of pictures.

By this time a couple of hours had passed and the overly crowded waiting room had cleared out twice.

I was getting more concerned..... I had never before seen a mammogram picture with my name on it before that had a bright white area circled in black marker.

The tech told me to put a gown back on because the spot was still there and the radiologist wanted to do an ultrasound.

When I met with the ultrasound technician, she felt my left breast and said, "here, you can feel it right in this area".. It felt to me to be lumpy breast tissue, but there was a small pea size hard area.

So......the technician did the ultrasound of just the upper outer area.
Then, the radiologist (female) did the same u/s exam.

Both said that, "nothing is showing up on the ultrasound". She told me to come back in six months time to have a mammogram of the left breast.

Because October is "National Breast Care Awareness Month", and lots of TV/newspaper shows/articles about breast care awareness, (as there should be) -- I'm just a bit more than concerned.

I will be seeing my GYN in early November for my annual, and will speak to her about this.

I'm just wondering what you ladies would think of this, if it were you?

Thank you in advance for all your advice.

Peace & Love,
Denise

indysteel
10-23-2006, 09:55 AM
Did the tech and/or radiologist explain why the lump that the tech actually felt didn't show up on the exam? Is is just that your breast tissue is lumpy? Depending on the explanation, I would get a second opinion. Even if you have to pay for another U/S out of pocket, I think it would be worth it. Also, I would ask for your GP or OB/GYN to refer you to a specialist. I have a history of breast cancer in my family (my mother was 34 when she was diagnosed) and my doctors refer me to the "big guns" any time they suspect anything.

Keep us posted.

Kate

mimitabby
10-23-2006, 09:56 AM
as much as i detest all of it, i'd get another opinion!

snapdragen
10-23-2006, 10:02 AM
Definately talk to your doc about it. If you can feel the pea sized lump, it seems it should show on the ultrasound.

Nanci
10-23-2006, 10:26 AM
From the mamm/needle loc tech standing behind me:

Not everything shows up on US. MAKE SURE you follow the instructions for follow-up.

In six months, (this is the normal time period) they should do another mammogram to see if it has grown, is still there, is gone. If it has grown, they will (should) do a biopsy. Even if it is the same size at six months they may recommend a biopsy.

Also, make sure it is a good radiologist reading it. Ask your GYN. If you were seen at a Breast Center, you should be ok.

Scary- I know.

Nanci

mary9761
10-23-2006, 10:29 AM
I would have a second opinion as well. I found a lump several years ago in my left breast that was larger than a pea, it didn't show on ultrasound OR mammogram though. Since it was a larger lump, I was given the choice of biopsy or lumpectomy. I wanted it GONE so I chose the lumpectomy. Luckily it was found to be benign, a Lypoma (fatty tissue tumour)
I now have several lumps in my right breast that we are keeping an eye (and hand) on to watch for changes. 2 of the lumps feel much like the first that I had removed and I found them myself and the 3rd the nurse found before my mammogram to be checked. None of them showed last year on the mammogram so I'm hoping there's no change in them this year (well, at least on film) I have felt the harder of the 3 feels like it has grown. They are pretty sure that they are the same as before, but we'll see if there's any change on the film next month at my annual mammogram.
I would keep pushing to find out for sure that there is NOTHING wrong, especially if the desity is still showing on the Xray. It may be something as simple as a calcium deposit, but the earlier that a malignant is caught (if there IS something wrong) the better chance of cure.
Good luck and keep us up to date please.
Mary

Nanci
10-23-2006, 11:10 AM
Another mamm/needle loc tech opinion:

Do you have a strong family history?

She says it is the microcalcifications that are worrisome- a pea-sized white density could be a lymph node, cyst, a number of non-malignant possibilities.

I asked her, if it was you, would you demand a biopsy right now? No. She'd wait six months and see what the new mammo showed.

(Both these techs are who assists the radiologist in placing a clip in a suspicious area to mark the area before the pt goes to surgery to have the area removed- they have seen hundreds of breast cancers and not breast cancers.)

BleeckerSt_Girl
10-24-2006, 05:58 PM
Get a second opinion!! And don't wait to do it.

I had a friend who had a small lump and her doctor looked at it, said don't worry about it it's benign, go home. It kept growing and 4 months later she went to another doctor and found out it was the very deadliest form of breast cancer, and she had waited way too long. :( She battled it for two years but lost. She was my age and left behind a 14 yr old son. Though not common, these things do happen.
Don't let this happen to ANY of you women out there!! If there's a suspicious finding- GET A SECOND OPINION RIGHT AWAY. It's nothing to take chances with.

Dogmama
10-25-2006, 04:31 AM
I had the same thing a couple of years ago. Turned out to be nothing. They said it was fairly common, but still bears watching. The good thing is that I go to the same breast center each year for my annual squeeze, so they have all of my records. I think that is important.

Nanci
10-25-2006, 04:38 AM
Having a doctor "look at" (feel?) a lump isn't the same thing as extensive films and an ultrasound...

(The same thing happened to a friend of mine with lung cancer- she had a chest x-ray for a persistant cough, there was a small density, she showed it to EVERYONE in a large teaching hospital, rads, ER docs, surgeons, her fiance surgeon and everyone told her the same thing- wait six months, get another film. One surg resident stood out and told her she needed a biopsy- but the majority ruled. Six months later- invasive lung CA to her mediastinum and lymph nodes. They gave her a 5% chance of surviving. She did.)

Nanci

Denise223
10-25-2006, 07:47 AM
Hi Everyone:

Thank you all for for your advice and opinions regarding my mammogram. I really appreciate the time you took.

I don't have a family history of breast cancer.

Nanci -- Thank you for speaking with two technicians who assist the MD's at your hospital! I really appreciate their input-and yours, of course.

The hospital I went to DOES have a Breast Center. My mammogram was done in the "Women's Imaging Department". The radiologist who read it is brand new--her name isn't even on the stationery yet.

I was handed a form letter that day, and it stated,
"Your Mammogram performed on 9/29/06 showed:
Findings that are likely benign but should be followed as indicated in the box below".
**Mammogram - Left breast - six months**

My past mammography form letters used to state, "No abnormalities or only benign findings. Normal exam".

I can call & ask that a radiologist IN the Breast Center take a look at my mammogram & U/S, * or * I could make an appointment at the Breast Center to discuss the spot seen on my mammogram. I'll call the Breast Center today AND make an appointment. -- Then it won't be on my mind for another 5 months :confused: .
I admit, I have been thinking of my mammogram pictures with the bright white area and the black marker circle around it.....


Originally posted by indysteel Did the tech and/or radiologist explain why the lump that the tech actually felt didn't show up on the exam? Is is just that your breast tissue is lumpy?

The radiologist said, "the density that is showing up on your mammogram is not showing up on ultrasound. Come back in six months for a repeat mammogram of your left breast".
IMO, my breast tissue normally feels lumpy.
I remember saying to her, "I'm not one to wait six months to re-check something suspicious--I'm too anxious. What can be done now?".
Her reply, "There's nothing on your ultrasound to biopsy."
I am very sorry to hear about your mom :( .

Thanks Mimi, Snap, Mary, Lisa & Dogmama <<--(LOVE your Avatar) for all of your advice & opinions.

Lisa -- I am very sorry to hear about your friend :( .

I will keep you all posted. Thanks again, for caring enough to answer my post.

Have a peaceful day!

Denise

Bikingmomof3
10-25-2006, 07:50 AM
Hi Everyone!

A few weeks ago I had a mammogram. I received a call 2 days later saying that there was "density in the left breast", which wasn't there on last years mammogram. So, I was asked to come in again. (I'll be 46 next month).

I went in a couple of days later. I saw my mammogram picture, and they had circled the "suspect whitish area" in black marker.

The tech took 3 pictures, explaining to me that "it's probably nothing", then I went out to the waiting area.
I was called back in -- the "density" was still there, so....the tech took 2 more pictures. Back to the waiting area.
And, again, I had to have more pictures taken -- The tech told me the radiologist wanted another couple of pictures.

By this time a couple of hours had passed and the overly crowded waiting room had cleared out twice.

I was getting more concerned..... I had never before seen a mammogram picture with my name on it before that had a bright white area circled in black marker.

The tech told me to put a gown back on because the spot was still there and the radiologist wanted to do an ultrasound.

When I met with the ultrasound technician, she felt my left breast and said, "here, you can feel it right in this area".. It felt to me to be lumpy breast tissue, but there was a small pea size hard area.

So......the technician did the ultrasound of just the upper outer area.
Then, the radiologist (female) did the same u/s exam.

Both said that, "nothing is showing up on the ultrasound". She told me to come back in six months time to have a mammogram of the left breast.

Because October is "National Breast Care Awareness Month", and lots of TV/newspaper shows/articles about breast care awareness, (as there should be) -- I'm just a bit more than concerned.

I will be seeing my GYN in early November for my annual, and will speak to her about this.

I'm just wondering what you ladies would think of this, if it were you?

Thank you in advance for all your advice.

Peace & Love,
Denise

Denise,
I would get a second opinion. Let us know what happens. I am praying for a good result.

Triskeliongirl
10-25-2006, 09:23 AM
I will tell you that this happened to me and it was nothing. But in my case, they didn't feel a pea size anything, it was just an anomaly on the mammogram that was not confirmed upon ultrasound or rexamination later. The reason to wait 6 months is that if it is just fatty tissue its likely to dissolve, move, etc.while if its a tumor it will get larger. Of course, the risk in waiting is that it if is something, you will have lost time in treating it. Given the radioligist is new, the palpitation of a pea size obsject, and the doubts you are feeling, I think getting a second opinion is well worth the cost. But, I would also stay CALM about it, not stressing and assume its nothing but by following up you give youself the assurance that just in case you are doing everything you can to get the best care possible. I would also monitor it by manual exam if I were you, and if I detected any change in size immediatly see my doc about it.

chickwhorips
10-25-2006, 03:28 PM
i say if you feel like you need more answers then seek a second opinion, if your comfortable with what you were told, make sure you go back in 6 months. i know anything like this isn't fun to worry about. try to stay calm and think good thoughts.

as a sidenote: my mom died of breast cancer. it wasn't a lump that was found to late but more of an indentation form of breast cancer. i'm not sure what the exact form/name of it is, but it was caught to late because they were looking for lumps instead of for that.

btchance
10-25-2006, 06:34 PM
If you are worried about it (and it sounds like you are), it is fine to go ahead and have a biopsy. It doesn't have to show up on US, there are mammogram tables that allow them to do what is called a stereotatic biospy - basically they do a mammogram, use a computer to localize the area, then use the computer to guide the needle to that location and biopsy it. Some women have masses that they can feel, but aren't seen on mammogram or US and they are biopsied based on palpating the area.

If the radiologist and techs aren't worried about it, it will probably be fine to wait six months. I would say do your monthly breast exams, and if you feel any thing growing, or feel anything in your axilla (a lump of lymph node), go back in and have them biopsy it.

What ever you decide to do, I hope you can have some peace of mind about it. Chances are it's nothing, but it is something to keep an eye on.

Good luck!