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Anxiously waiting for an appointment at the breast clinic

4 REPLIES 4
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Re: Anxiously waiting for an appointment at the breast clinic

I am driving myself crazy.

 I keep checking my breasts and feel so anxious. I was even thinking that this is happening because I got off so lightly with the cervical cancer. 

 

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Re: Anxiously waiting for an appointment at the breast clinic

The waiting is awful but try to stay positive. 

 

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Re: Anxiously waiting for an appointment at the breast clinic

Thank you so much for your reply. Lots of vet helpful information for me. I think I might give the nurses a call.

 

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Re: Anxiously waiting for an appointment at the breast clinic

Hi lmca 

 You've done the right thing by not ignoring it, even if you’re now in a period of great uncertainty. Some women do have lumpy breasts but changes can occur and they need to be checked. An important fact to hold onto is that most breast lumps are not breast cancer. I don’t know if there is any link between cervical and breast cancer tho so, if that bothers you, I’d suggest you ring the nurses here. They are very good.

Clinics will be different right now, with everyone masked and presumably waiting areas changed. However I imagine the same things happen. While you are waiting, you will be weighed and may have a blood test. Then you will see a breast consultant who will examine your breasts and focus on any lumps and compare these to your last mammogram. They may send you for another mammogram and an ultrasound. If the ultrasound confirms any suspected breast cancer (specialists can generally tell by the feel of the edges of the lumps), the radiologist may do a sentinel biopsy which is uncomfortable but not painful. It’s guided by ultrasound and involves up to three ‘punches’ by an instrument placed against your armpit. They feel like dull thumps. 

The consultant may be non-committal, tell you they are benign lumps or tell you immediately that it is breast cancer but they need to wait for the results of the biopsies. If it is breast cancer, you will be assigned a breast care nurse who will be there for you for the next months. You will then have another interminable wait for your results (probably a week but if feels longer) after which it’s anyone’s guess. Let’s hope you have lumpy breasts and are not incredibly unlucky.

I’ll repeat the fact that most referrals to the breast cancer clinics are for benign lumps and advise you to steer clean of Google, which has the power to terrify us because it cannot adapt to our individual circumstances and emotions. Meantime, do look after your emotions - meditate, do relaxation, go running, whatever works for you. It’s normal and human to be fearful but it’s hard work and you’ve at least three weeks of persistent worry. If the anxiety gets overwhelming, consult your GP.

I wish you all the best,

Jan x

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Anxiously waiting for an appointment at the breast clinic

Hello,

I am feeing a little overwhelmed at the moment. This might be quite a long post. 

I am 38 years old and 4 years ago I had a hysterectomy due to the very early stages of cervical cancer. As everything else was clear I didn't need any further treatment. From smear to operation was only 6 weeks and was a huge shock. 

Last year I felt a lump in my left breast and went to see a private consultant. When I was examined the consultant could feel 3 different lumps. I had a mammogram and ultrasound. I was told that the lumps were nothing to worry about. Probably due to being perimenopausal. 

I have noticed some further changes to my breast now. My breast is noticeably larger and there is a definite thickening that I can see and feel. I can feel a lump around 4cm long and a couple of smaller once that I think were there before. My skin also feels like chicken skin on the are over the lump but doesn't look different. 

I left it two weeks in case it was just hormonal changes and then made an appointment with my GP for Monday this week. The GP was fantastic and had taken the time to read my notes properly before I arrived. She examined me and was concerned that what I was describing and she could see and feel has changed since my last examination. She has referred me to the Breast Clinic. Apparently the local breast clinic is operating for GP referrals and she is hopeful I will be seen within 3 weeks. 

Although I have had a mammogram before I am not really sure what to expect at the breast clinic and I am feeling really anxious. I really didn't expect the cervical cancer diagnosis and it completely took me by surprise. My head is spinning with emotions and being in this weird lockdown situation isn't helping (we are in Scotland and so still quite restricted). 

Thank you for reading.