Struggling with wait

Hi, it’s been 4 and a half weeks since my surgery (wle and slnb) and my results appointment is still 1 and half weeks away. I was given the appointment on the day after my operation via nhs app. Since my op, there has been no contact from anyone at hospital except my conversation with my breast care nurse about a seroma. My anxiety is through the roof. I’m off work, I can’t sleep and I feel awful. Most others on here are getting results in about 2 to 3 weeks. 6 weeks feels like torture. I am worried as the nurse said that after my results there might be another wait while oncotype is done and then a wait for radiotherapy. How long can I wait? Could stray cancer cells already be working on new tumour? I can’t go back to work in limbo, but the consultant still hasnt filled in form for my insurance company so my critical illness isnt available either. My bilirubin levels are high too. My breast nurse said not to worry yet. But i am and when should I get liver function tests? Sorry and thank you. I know this was a lot.

1 Like


Not sure if this will help or not, but mainly it’s so your aren’t alone in this. I waited four weeks after op for my initial results then another two weeks for have axillary clearance, I then waited an additional five weeks for those, they then did onco test which was another three weeks and now I’ve waited since 18th January for my ct planning/radiotherapy which should be on Tuesday :crossed_fingers::crossed_fingers:. I also developed shingles during all this which my gp said is probably down to the shock and stress of it all.

I haven’t had any other scans just mammogram and ultrasound, but I think the bloods they took before the operation checked liver function etc.

I know this doesn’t help your situation but I want you to know we are are all here for you this tortuous waiting.

Take care, speak to your BCN again and see if she can help in anyway. Are your results back, have they had your mdt meeting yet, is it just backlog causing the delay etc. I know my delays are due to shortage of pathologists and an oncologist going sick.

I also received critical illness payment can you contact your consultants secretary to chase this?

Wishing you well

Jackie xx

Thanks Jackie. I know I’ve ranted about this before but my normally very rational and sound state of mind is in tatters. Plus I wrote that post at 5.30am after being awake since 4am. My concern is that I’ll need further surgery and it will delay even further.
I hope you get going with your radiotherapy this month. I will ring my consultant’s secretary- do you think they will mind?
Hope all goes well with your radiotherapy planning. X

Hi bluesatsuma,

Thanks for posting. It’s understandable your anxiety is through the roof. As you and @chillout365 say, waiting for results can feel tortuous and can affect many aspects of your life including work and sleep.

At difficult times like this, it might be easier to call us and talk things through. We often find we can help people more by speaking to them on the phone. If so please do call us on 0808 800 6000.

Pathology results can take 2-3 weeks following surgery, but we hear from many people who wait longer than this. It is a worrying time and you might find our information about coping with stress and anxiety helpful.

As you have been waiting for over 4 weeks for your results, it’s worthwhile contacting your treatment team or breast care nurse to discuss your worries and concerns. If your results are ready, they may be able to bring your appointment forward.

Although your breast care nurse said not to worry about your raised bilirubin level, it’s important to tell your treatment team your concerns . They could discuss your blood results and explain whether or not you need a liver function test. It would also be a good idea to ask your breast care nurse about the seroma you have and to ask to have it checked.

In regard to your critical illness cover, as @chillout365 suggests, it would be worth while chasing this up with your breast surgeon’s secretary.

Waiting for other test results, such as the oncotype DX can also be very difficult. But it allows time for your wounds to heal which is important before your team decide on the next best treatments for you such as chemotherapy, radiotherapy and hormone therapy.

You say you are worried about cancer cells spreading while you are waiting to start your next treatment. The aim of treatment for primary breast cancer is to remove the cancer with surgery, and then reduce the risk of it returning with the treatments mentioned above. Having a gap between these treatments doesn’t usually increase the risk of breast cancer returning but, do raise your concerns with your treatment team. They will have guidelines to ensure treatment is started within a safe timeframe.

If you’re unable to resolve a concern directly with your treatment, you do have the right to make a complaint. Depending on where you live in the UK, you can contact: England Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS); Scotland Patient Advice and Support Service ; Wales local health board

Northern Ireland Patient and Client Council

We also offer a range of free supportive services for anyone who has had a diagnosis of breast cancer which you may be interested in. They include face to face and online courses and events.

For more details about all of these services, please see the information on the link, or call our free helpline

As mentioned previously, please do call our helpline if you would like to talk this through or have any further questions. The helpline team have time to listen, talk things through and signpost you to more support and information if necessary. Your call will be confidential, and the number is free from UK landlines and all mobile networks. The number is 0808 800 6000, (Relay UK -prefix 18001).

If you would prefer one of our nurses to call you. To do this, please complete this form ticking the box agreeing to a call back.

Our usual opening hours are Monday to Friday 9am - 4pm and 9am - 1pm on Saturday.

Out of hours you can leave a message and we will call you back when we next open.

Best wishes


Breast Care Nurse

Please read the Ask Our Nurses disclaimer Full details on how we collect and use your data can be found in our Privacy Policy

As we are unable to monitor for further replies, this thread will now be closed. If you have any additional questions or would like to provide feedback, please start a new thread, call our helpline, email us or request a call back.