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Not both breasts, but.......

14 REPLIES 14
HFK1234
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Yes I did see it but had forgotten, thank you for reminding me.

You've completely hit the nail on the head. If mammograms do not necessarily detect in younger women how on earth will it be picked up in a routine checkup prior to the menopause.

I wonder how much ultrasounds are. Why don't they do that in this country. Surely the cost of that is less than the surgery and other treatment?

You were so brave just booking time off work. I just couldn't of done that. Were they supportive when you told them after? I completely know what you mean about saying it out loud.

I had literally started a new job and am having to take time off for for appointments. How did you get round that.

How long ago were you diagnosed?

H x
Freda61
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

I hardly told anyone until after surgery.  I booked holiday at work.  I say to people I have been having treatment for BC and it's nearly finished now.  I really struggle saying it out loud, especially face to face.  Because I've got hair & boobs I'm half in denial.

 

I am a bit worried about it returning, but now busy with rads so I can park it most of the time.  Logically I know the rads and tam will help.  But my lump didn't show on the mamogram (because it mimics breast tissue) so I am worried it might not be spotted so quick next time if it comes again.  Also my BC breast is lumpy inside after surgery so how am I going to know?  A Russian friend suggested annual ultrasound as that is what they do.  I won't get that on the NHS. 

 

Did you see the post on putting the glass down?  I am going to go and find it I need to re-read it and I think you will like it

 

 

HFK1234
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

I think this is my problem and what I need help with. I can get my brain around getting rid of this lump and am feeling better knowing it hasn't spread. Its the fear of it returning. Surely by taking the breast away its making the returning cancer go deeper if it returns? Or is that a stupid thought? Im scared of the future.

I have trouble living in the present at the best of times!

I am going to have some counselling soon. I hope it will help.

I still haven't told my kids or my mum. I can't do it. I will once I have my surgery booked in whatever type it will be.

: (



Freda61
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi H

I did not need chemo, as it had not gone to my nodes.  I have started rads this week and have been on tamoxifen for 3 weeks.

 

When I was discussing what to do with the surgeon I said something about getting rid of it completely so it wouldn't come back.  She said it is not so simple, there is not a line where the breast tissue stops and non-breast tissue starts, and it could come back in fatty tissue under the arm or in the chest wall for example. 

She was very confident that she could get rid of my lump and they could give me treatment to help protect my future, but was also very clear that once you have had it you are at higher risk of it coming back.

 

One thing I have learnt from this site is that if things do go wrong there are lots of other treatments they can try.

 

It is so hard to know what to do.  Even on the morning of my op I was not 100% sure.  Once it was done I didn't really question it again though.

HFK1234
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

I agree, it's lovely - I just hope I can!

I'm having a bit of a denial day today - I really cannot believe this is happening. I think because it's been days since I've spoken to a nurse or consultant, or had any tests. It's almost as if it's not real today. Long may it last.

I've got my works Christmas do tomorrow, so I'm just going to enjoy myself and not even mention it.

I'll face reality again when I hear from the hospital. : (
mary32
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi Hearty

 

I just wanted to say that I love what you expresed:

 

 I hope you eventually feel protective of yourself so that you cherish what you become after the treatment.

 

I will try and remember this, thank you.

 

Mary

hearty
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi H,

I just caught sight of your post and hope my response helps a little. I had a small invasive lump just under my nipple. I'm really small...an A cup or even AA if I lose any weight!

I had a WLE (lumpectomy) and, to reassure you, the surgery was really well done...I wasn't too mishapen and could hardly see the scar...the surgeons are very clever!

Sadly, not all the tumour was removed so I had to go back and have a mastectomy. I decided not to have reconstructive surgery as there's not much extra flesh on me! On the positive side, the breast care nurse who fitted me with a bra and prosthesis, was an angel. Because I am small my "oobaboob" as I call it, is light and very comfortable...nobody would tell it wasn't real when I'm clothed!

However, I would say the psychological side of it being such a permanent decision is tricky. I would have much preferred to have the WLE and radiotherapy as my friend who had radio found it OK.

Whatever your path is, I hope you eventually feel protective of yourself so that you cherish what you become after the treatment.

mary32
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi H

 

Statistically the risk of recurrence is no higher for WLE followed by radiotherapy so you are not ensuring reduced chance of recurrence by choosing mx instead. However you have said that your consultant feels that the wle would be an issue with regard to the cosmetic outcome so you need to consider that and perhaps ask more questions about it.

 

Have you asked whether you could have immediate reconstruction if you choose mx. You also need to find out what other treatment you will need whichever way you go, you will definitely need radiotherapy if you choose wle but have they mentioned chemo? All these treatment options depend on your type of cance and grade etc.

 

I had wle but my surgeon said that if I was not happy with the results I could still opt for mx afterwards.

 

Hope you are able to make a decision that you are comfortable with, take care.

 

Mary

HFK1234
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi Freda61 - thank you for that link, it is really helpful. Could I ask whether you had to have radiotherapy or chemo after the lumpectomy? Also, my other fear is that if I opt (given the choice) for mastectomy, then it returns, the only place it has to go is the scar area - what then? They have nothing to remove - therefore is that harder to treat?

Is it better to leave some breast so that if it does return, the options are greater?

H x
Freda61
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi H

 

Partly good news then, but still a lot to think about.

 

Last night I found this website to help clarify decisions about lumpectomy or mx www.bresdex.com/ (it was a link from the NHS cancer info so think the site is ok).  I wish I had found it a few weeks ago when I needed it!

 

I chose to have my lump out, but we caught it very early and I had plenty of breast tissue to be re-shaped.  I think it was the right decision for me.

 

Good luck with processing the info.  Once you have made a decision and got a treatment plan it gets a bit easier mentally.  There is still loads of stuff going round and round in your head but it gets easier to focus on one bit at a time. X

HFK1234
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi both

I think I would prefer a mastectomy to be honest. Two reasons - this experience has freaked me out and I would like to reduce my chances of it returning. The other is that I keep having the consultant's words going around my head that I would be left disfigured due to my small size so mastectomy would be the better option for me.

Also, as you rightly say Desi, would I need radiotherapy or chemo if I have a lumpectomy.

Questions questions!

H x
Desi-2
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi it might be worth asking how the choice of lumpectomy or mastectomy will effect your after treatment ie radiotherapy or chemo.
4littlecherubs
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi,

So pleased for you not to have it in both breasts... bet you were very relieved! You still probably wont feel much better tho as you still dont know whats happening 😞

I had a mastectomy but had no choice.....given the choice I would of probably still had a mastectomy for peace of mind but im sure your consultant will explain what is best for you and the reasons why and make you feel better about whichever operation you have.

I never slept properly until I found out my full results.....the day I got my results I slept like a baby!!

Its normal to feel the way your feeling and you will keep having ups and downs for a while....whenever a question popped into my head I wrote it down so I could get answers when I next spoke to my nurse or consultant....I could never remember any of the answers but at least id asked haha.

Apparently my case was very complicated...but it didnt take long for my operation and treatment plan to be arranged so even though they say yours is rare im sure they will get you sorted soon.

Do you know what your next step is or have anymore appointments made? xx
Sam_BCC
Member

Re: Not both breasts, but.......

Hi HFK1234

 

I am sorry to read you are having such a tough time at the moment.  I've given here a link to the information page which gives details of the services and support breast cancer care have available:

 

http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk/breast-cancer-information

 

Also you might find it helpful to talk through how you feeling with a member of staff on the helpline.  Here you can share your concerns with someone who will offer you a listening ear as well as emotional support and practical information.  The number to call is 0808 800 6000 and lines are open Monday to Friday 9 to 5pm and Saturday 10 to 2pm.

 

Best wishes Sam, BCC Facilitator   

HFK1234
Member

Not both breasts, but.......

Hi all

 

I thought I'd start a new thread so that people didn't have to read through all my previous wordy posts!

 

Quick update - diagnosed on 13th Nov, 43, mother to three boys.  Consultant said non-invasive tubular carcinoma.  Lots of shock, meltdowns and sleepless nights!

 

Then they thought they saw something int the other breast, but what it was that the mri was showing different pictures in each breast.  So had my ultrasound yesterday, which showed that it was a typical picture for someone of my age with lots of hormones floating about, phew.

 

But - it's a rare form, the doctor doing the ultrasound said that it was 10 years since she saw this type where it's under the skin (anyone else had this?).  So they have no idea how to treat me, which means my treatment plan is not going to be as quick as I would have liked!

 

They give in one hand then take from the other!  The doctor doing the ultrasound asked me whether I had been given any information on where I could go for support after I had told her that I hadn't slept since the diagnosis without the aid of sleeping tablets - No I answered - so she gave me a couple of local places that offer therapy etc.  I explained to her that each time I tried to call the nurse, she was never there, the secretary to my consultant never called back, so felt a bit in the lurch.

 

The next day, the breast nurse called me and we had a really long chat.  She explained that she had to cover another nurse's post (so of course I felt bad for moaning/expressing my needs).  Anyway she was fantastic.  I told her about my concern of becoming addicted to the sleeping tabs, she then reassured me that once I know what is happening, I will feel a lot more in control and will be able to relax a bit more (pretty much what I am reading from other ladies' posts).  Anyone have any experience of this - did any of you resort to sleeping tablets?  Were you able to stop?

 

She then said that when I was discussed on the panel today, they were talking about the possibility of me having a lumpectomy, rather than mascectomy.  However when I first went to the consultant on diagnosis day, he said he'd want to do a mascetomy as a lumpectomy would disfigure me due to my small size and the fact that it's right on the aerioli (is that how it's spelt).   I don't want to be disfigured - I would rather they took the breast - or would I?  What's better? (to be alive, I know, but you know what I mean)

 

Does this now mean that I will need radiotherapy????  

 

This is so traumatic, isn't it?  How are we supposed to concentrate at work?  I feel so tired right now - like I've been punched in both eyes!  I'm in a new job too, so I really have to be on the ball, I got my diagnosis about 2 weeks after starting!  They've been fantastic, I'm really lucky on that front.

 

Right, enough typing - you'll get bored if I carry on!

 

Thinking of you all.

 

H xx