MRI Scan Results - Another Biopsy?


I was just wondering if there is anyone out there who could give me any information / advice on the following.

My mum was diagnosed with Invasive Lobular Cancer in her left breast approx 2 weeks ago. She has 2 cancerous lumps approx 1 cm each, right next to each other (above the nipple). She has already had a biopsy, ultra sounds and now an MRI.
The MRI was supposed to determine what kind of operation she would need and then she was supposed to get an operation date to remove the cancer.
Now one of the consultants who looked at her MRI results is a bit concerned about another ‘shaddow’ that they wanted to investigate further, they now want to do another biopsy on this patch to determine whether or not the operation is to be a lumpectomy or a masectomy - depending on if this new lump is Benign or cancerous.

The doctors have said that the earliest this biopsy can be done is another 11 days. Surely their priority should be to cut the cancer out to stop it growing anymore or potentially spreading?

Also, nothing was mentioned about the lymph nodes - should we take this as a good sign? Does it show up on the MRI if the cancer has spread that far or would that be something we would have to wait until the operation for?

The doctors have not really offered my mum much information about the results (Locum doctor) and I cannot bare to see my mum stressing and wondering what is going on for another 2 weeks inside her body.

Has anyone else been through a similar thing and able to offer any support that I can pass on to my mum?

Thanks in advance for any information anyone can give me and I wish anyone suffering with breast cancer a speedy recovery.

Hi, the doctors have already got a jolly good idea of what sort of cancer is in the other lumps and they will know how quickly it is growing. I know the first instinct is to get it out quickly, but it is honestly better to get all the infomation together to decide on the best treatment. So as frustrating as it is, it is better to find out what this other shadow is before surgery.And yes they would have spotted nodal involvement on the scans and done biopsies of the nodes if they had concerns.

It is better this way than having surgery to take the lumps out and then later having more surgery to deal with the new area.

11 days seems an age, and all the time you are worrying becuase all you want to know is what exactly is wrong and what is the treatment going to be. Its a terrible time before the treatment plan is fixed and you mothers is going to take longer than others. i do not understand why it takes so long to get an appointment for the biopsy. But i suppose it is different from one region to another.

I had quite a delay between my dx (mine was lobular too) and start of treatment (christmas and moving area for surgery). My surgeon assured me that a delay of a few weeks would make no difference to my long term prognosis.

As far as I know the MRI won’t have looked at the lymph nodes - they usually do an ultrasound and sometimes a biopsy to check those out.

It sounds as if your mum’s lumps are quite small. If it’s any comfort, my tumour was 5.5cm x 2.5cm - they removed 15 nodes and all were clear.

Good luck to your mum and to you.

Thanks so much for your comments. I have passed this on to my mum. Her biopsy has now been brought forward a few days, so hopefully they can operate soon. I think that will make her feel a lot better about things.

Thanks again for your advice.

do let us know how she gets on, or come back if you have any more questions

I had an MRI after mammo and ultrasound because my tumour didn’t show up on the mammo so surgeon wanted to be sure that everything that needed to be found HAD been found. However, she did point out that MRI is SO good at spotting changes that it can bring up quite a few areas that need to be looked at further that turn out to be nothing to worry about. True enough, after my MRI I got a call (Christmas eve) saying that another “shadow” had been spotted on the MRI so I would need another core biopsy to check it out. Of course by then I was convinced that I ought to contact the funeral director, but when the results came back from the second lot of biopsies, it was shown to be normal breast changes and NOTHING to worry about. I cried my eyes out at those results, purely from relief.

I was also told that the MRI I had DID check my nodes, I think it depends on how they do it but I couldn’t swear to that.

I’m glad the biopsy date has been brought forward, the knowledge that there might be something “in there” is deeply distressing, and I know I felt that the sooner they could get started on active treatment the happier I’d be.

Good luck to your mum, and do keep us posted. Also post anything about how YOU cope too, as this site isn’t just for the people with the lumps but for anyone who’s affected by this rotten disease, and that includes YOU.

Best wishes,