With a lumpectomy, they need to get a clear margin of healthy tissue. If they are simply removing ducts, there won't be any healthy tissue removed at that time.
I have now spoken to the helpline and I think it is actually a total duct excision that is being recommended (which, to my mind is similar to a lumpectomy but a more specific procedure in a specific area). So it is still very invasive and I still don't understand why a biopsy is not being recommended. However I have been gathering lots of information and I will have a conversation with the consultant about this on 3 December. I saw another post which said bring questions and bring pen and paper to make notes - this is a great idea and I will do that. I will also be bringing my parter as, although I am extraordinarily independent and don't normally have anyone with me for health appointments, I have found it is very emotional when you are being told you might have cancer. That sounds obvious I know but we all deal with a lot in life and DCIS is very treatable I am told so it could be viewed as just a process I need to go through. But it's not as simple as that!
I'm sorry to read you're having a tough time at the moment. Whilst you are waiting for the other users to reply with their experiences do give the BCC helpline a call on 0808 800 6000. Here you can talk through your thoughts and concerns with a member of staff who will offer you a listening ear as well as emotional support and practical information.
Best wishes Sam, BCC Facilitator
I have discharge from my right nipple (bloody at first, now clear) and have seen the consultant twice. I have had a mammogram and an ultrasound, both clear. However the consultant seems to want to go straight to a lumpectomy to diagnose whether or not I have DCIS, by removing all the ducts underneath my nipple and testing them for abnormal cells. She said it was partly diagnostic, partly treatment. Is this normal? Why am I not being offered a biopsy? I am 41 years old and there is no history of breast cancer for me or my family. I have another appointment in early December but am fact-finding before then and cannot see any references which talk about bypassing the biopsy stage. I am confused!