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confused

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Re: confused

TOTALLY CONFUSED :o(

Hi.................I had a mamogram, needle core biopsy and right sided mastectomy 6 months ago. I am taking Tamoxifen as treatment. No chemo or radiotherapy needed. I have just been for a 6 month check up and all seems to be well. The Dr examined by remaining breast said nothing buts wants to see me again in 3 months is this normal and please ..........DO I HAVE BREAST CANCER? or am I now clear as the offending one has gone.

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Re: confused

Hi Alice

How are you doing? take some comfort that you are able to let it out on this site. You can say how you feel and not feel guilty or worried that you are upsetting your loved ones and you know that we understand what you are going thru as we have been where you are or at least as close as we can be to where you are.

I have been thinking of you Alice and hoping that you are feeling better by now. Sorry but you will have days when you are really low, it WILL get better tho and swing back and for from acceptance and denial, well it has in my experience.

Spoil yourself when you can, cry when you need to, don't be alone too much, get loads of hugs and eventually you will accept fully and feel so much better for it. It is so hard in the early days to believe that one day you will think that your altered body is looking ok or even looking good and that you are happy with it, also hard to believe that your concerns will be dealt with whatever they may be. That is how I felt and thought at my lowest times. I am now 6 weeks post op and only the past 2 weeks I feel I have fully accepted the worries and sorted them out as much as I can, the changes to my body and my mind and my outlook on life and relationships with family and friends. I am just so glad that this monster has been removed from my body and that life will go on for me, the op has saved my life and I am determined to live my life to the full to the best of my ability and that helps me tremendously. I think it will always be in the back of my mind that it may return but I now think if it does then it will be caught in time and I might need another mastectomy and possibly further treatment but at least it will not take my life so all in all the future is looking good to me. I can now look in the mirror and not think that I look good but feel happy to be alive and not feel that I look disfigured and ugly like I did up until about 2 weeks ago, still a little sadness but hey ho I can cope with that and you will too with your recovery from this awful ilness.

Smiles and hugs to you Alice, let us know how you are when you feel up to it.

luvnhugsCarolexxx

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Re: confused

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Re: confused

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Re: confused

Hope you are doing better Alice. I was ill so didn't get to respond before. I'll pray that your surgery goes well.

Take care of yourself.
Janet

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Re: confused

Hi Alice

Loss of appetite, you are not alone there for sure, hope you are managing to sleep tho that was my biggest problem. I am sure that your students will know that you would not desert them,it just shows the type of person you are that you want to have everything prepared for them whilst you have time off for your treatment. Remember tho that you are the most important person in your life right now Alice, you need to be a little selfish and take time to research and prepare for your pre assessment appointment. You have a big decision to make and I wish you all the luck in the world.

Take good care of yourself, all the best to you xx

luvnhugsCarolexxx

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Re: confused

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Guest user
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Re: confused

Hi Alice

So sorry to hear it is BC. I used the resource pack that the facilitator advised you about, only problem was that by the time it came in the post I had already had my appointment to discuss my options. I did however then ask questions prior to my surgery.

I had no choice it was mastectomy or nothing. I reckon that if they offered you options then take WLE and rads as that should sort it out, if it comes back later then it would likely need to be a mastectomy, but it hopefully won't come back. If you felt you would always be worrying about it coming back then if I were you I would go for the mastectomy straight off. Thats just me tho, I have not had much luck in life and so for me I would not tempt fate, I would just want to know I had seen it off as certainly as I could do at the time with the information and advice I was given.

Some questions I asked.

Q. What happens if I do not have the mastectomy. A. The DCIS will eventually become invasive and will spread to other parts of the body. My op showed 2 areas of micro invasion which is the tumour progressing to invasive.

Q. What size is the tumour. A. Mine was approx 5.8cm but they can only tell exactly when they remove it.
Q. What is the grade. A High grade, fast growing.
Q How long has it been there. A 6 to 9 months.
Q.Is the DCIS likely to become invasive. A. Yes, but they only found micro invasion but this would go to invasive I was told.

Some that you might ask.
Q. What are the chances of it coming back for both options.
Q. What would they do if it were them.
Q. How many women with your diagnosis were cured/in remission and for how long with each of the options.

Most of all, very good luck to you, let me know how you are please, bless you.
luvnhugsCarolexxx

RoadRunner
Member

Re: confused

Alice,

You will be told the size of your lump after surgery - you will be given an appointment to see your surgeon probably a week or two after surgery where he will tell you the results of the surgery, and what happens next. Don't worry about that now, take it one step at a time, and concentrate on sorting yourself out for hospital.

I am convinced that our emotional wellbeing has an impact here. I lost my mother to an unknown cancer three weeks before I was dx, and am convinced that the stress of the preceeding three months was a factor in my cancer. The doctors will tell you otherwise.

Lucy_BCC
Member

Re: confused

Hi Alice

You may find Breast Cancer Care's resource pack helpful, it is specially designed for those newly diagnosed and it's filled with information to help you better understand your diagnosis, test results and the various treatments available.
The pack is free of charge as are all our publications. If you would like a copy just follow the link below: http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk//content.php?page_id=7514 I hope this is useful.

Kind regards
Katie

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Re: confused

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LancsLass
Member

Re: confused

Hi Alice
Just read your postings and wanted to send you a big hug. There are lots of us out here who have been through the experience and come out of it the other side. I would think that the tablets they are talking about is something like Aramidex which is for cancer that is ER+ (oestrogen dependant) When you feel ready there is a lot of information on the internet. I also found the BCC telephone helpline really useful. You need to ask your consultant or breast care nurse the grade of the lump and if its ER+ or ER negative.
Good luck.
Much love Debbie x

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Re: confused

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Re: confused

Alice;

You are going through a rough time. I echo the above statements - once you start treatments you will start feeling in control again.

Always,
JK

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RoadRunner
Member

Re: confused

Alice,

If you are only having a lumpectomy & rads you may not need much time off work. I was back at work two weeks after my mastectomy, and then scheduled my rads for after work (I finish at 3pm). You will get tired during rads - I'm not sure if its the rads itself, or just the hassle of turning up to the hospital every day.

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Re: confused

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RoadRunner
Member

Re: confused

Alice,

Sorry to hear you had the news no-one wants. Do you have a date yet for treatment? As everyone says, it is easier once you get started as then you can feel that you are doing something about it. I hope you are getting plenty of support from family & friends. You may find that some people don't give the support you would expect - we all find that - but others, often unexpectedly, turn into real gems. They are the ones you will treasure in the months to come. Make sure you accept all offers of help that come your way, and don't be hard on yourself.

Thinking of you
xx

eileen765
Member

Re: confused

Alice, your head is probably all over the place at the moment. I was in your position 12 months ago. It is the hardest time from being diagnosed to starting treatment as so many others on here will testify. All I can say is that for a lot of us once the treatment was decided on it started to get easier to cope. You will feel as if you are back in control, well a little anyway!! Try not to worry too much, the support on here is amazing. I feel I couldn't have got through the treatment without my fellow sufferers, and there were many!!! Take care thinking of you love Eileen

Lucy_BCC
Member

Re: confused

Dear Alice

I'm sorry to hear of your diagnosis today, as Janet said I'm sure you will continue to receive support and help from the other forum members. You are also welcome to call our confidential helpline and talk to one of our specialist nurses. They will also be able to talk to you about further support available to you which may help you through this difficult time. The number to call is 0808 800 6000 and it's open 9-5 tomorrow.

Best wishes
Katie

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Re: confused

Alice - I'm really sorry... Please let us help you in anyway we can. Please posted when you are ready to share the details. We maybe able to help you make some sense of it.

Guest user
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Re: confused

Hi all
Don't know what to say, yes it is cancer and now it is wainting for the next step. numb. glasss of wine.

Guest user
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Re: confused

Hi Alice

Sending my best wishes and all the luck that I can to you for tomorrow. Sorry you have joined us on this site, it has been a godsend to me. I am also 47, I saw my gp who felt nothing on 25 Sept 2007 but referred me for a mammogram to be on the safe side then saw my local breast clinic on 23 October, I went on my own as I thought it was only a cyst. Anyway I then had ultrasound, needle aspirations and was told that I had BC of around 5cm and had to have a mastectomy. They knew this from the aspirations to the breast and the armpit, they then did the core biopsy. I have had DCIS which they hoped was not invasive but on the day of my surgery they did find 2 areas of micro invasion which means that the monster would have gone on to become invasive.

I had mastectomy on 1 December with LDflap reconstruction (backflap). It all comes as a huge blow to us Alice and even now 1 month after my op, with a lovely 6 to 7 inch scar on my back some scarring under my armpit and a circular scar where my nipple used to be along with bruising and denting and still a fair amount of pain I still wake some days and think has this really happened to me?

I hope your prognosis is as good as possible Alice, please take someone along with you, it really helped me when I went for the results of the core biopsy and also to discuss reconstruction options. I could not take all the information in at the time and it helped to have my best friend and my partner with me at such a difficult time.

I am slowly coming to terms with my changed appearance and the fact that I have to be pretty lazy right now but I am hopeful of a full recovery as they say that DCIS is the best of a bad lot. I am so lucky that I do not need chemo or radio, also early menopause so they tell me I don't need drugs either. Just don't feel so lucky to have had to have the mastectomy, however, life will go on and I am determined to enjoy it and make the most of it as soon as I am fully recovered.

Take care, luvnhugsCarolexxx

RoadRunner
Member

Re: confused

Good luck for yor appointment. I hope you get good news, but we will be here for you either way.

By the way, I had a grade three invasive cancer, with 3/16 lymph nodes involved, with a mastectomy followed by chemo & radio. Now on herceptin & tamoxifen.

Be prepared to have to go through the full works. You may not have to, but for those of us in our 40s (and younger) the doctors like to throw everything at you, and will treat you with more aggressive treatment than someone older with the same results.

What age group do you teach? My kids, aged 12, 15 and 18, went back to school this week - two yesterday, and the youngest today.

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Re: confused

Janet & Roadrunner

thanks for all the kind words of support, woke with cramping pain in chest. PANIC I know. Only optionI i think is to to work through it and scrub the floors til its time to go for appointment at lunch! At least I don't need to think about work til next Monday when the new term starts, I am a teacher.

I will post later whatever the outcome
xx
thankyou

Guest user
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Re: confused

Alice;

Please keep us post on how tomorrow goes. I'm praying that you will hear positive news. Should you have any questions, want feedback, or just need to reflect, we'll be here.

I'm currently dealing with some radiation side-effects but was given advice on how to manage. I slept a lot the last few days, without meds for a change =). Even though the last few weeks have been rough I'm feeling pretty confident that things will get back on track. Expect good days and bad, but know you can and will get through the bad ones.

Best of luck tomorrow!
Janet

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Re: confused

Hi Roadrunner,
A friend is going with me but in the first instance I will ask her not to come in with me

RoadRunner
Member

Re: confused

Hi Alice,

I hope your appointment tomorrow goes OK. It really is a good idea to take some one with you. It's so difficult to take in what they tell you when you are in a state of shock. And I think you will be in a state of shock for some time to come. I know I was. I was dx in February, and I think it was about August that it finally hit me. Until then I'd been in this state of total disbelief, and it was like it was all happening to someone else. I was 44 at dx, with none of the known risk factors. But then it seems to me that most of us posting on this site didn't have the risk factors either.

Best wishes for tomorrow
xxx

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Re: confused

Hi Janet

I have just read your earlier posts, you have had a really cr...y time of it. Sorry. You did however get some really good posts in response to your initial one.

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Re: confused

Alice;

I'm glad you got some rest. You probably won't be in a party mood for a while but don't let it get you down. I had a questionable mam in July 2005 but was told not to worry about it. So, June 2006 was when I was finally dx with stage 3 questionable stage 4 (had bone lesion on pelvic bone). The mets to the pelvis and femur bones was just confirmed early December. I was feeling pretty scared and alone, that's when I found this forum. It helps to not feel so alone. If you look under secondary BC you'll see my original posts.

So, how did your appointment go? Did you take someone with you? Did you get your pathology report back yet? Would love to help anyway I can!

Always,
Janet

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Re: confused

Hi Janetk

I appreciate your input.

Guest user
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Re: confused

Hi AliceInWonderland;

When I went to get a mammogram due to multiple health issues the radiologist told me it was BC after completing an ultrasound. This was before a core biopsy was even performed. The BC nurse told me that they wouldn't tell you that without confirmation from a biospy, well maybe if they were really sure. Well, I guess she was really sure and she was very right. Even though I suspected I had BC it was still a shock. I was 41 at the time and actually hearing the word cancer was so unbelievable. Being afraid is a very normal reaction to all that you are going though. Also, losing sleep, is pretty normal too. You may want to share your sleep issues that with your doctor. Rest is very important.

I had a thick lining too and heavy bleeding. I had a D&C done prior to having chemo. The doctors didn't seem to relate this issue with the BC.

Keep us posted on your results.

JanetK

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Re: confused

Happy New Year and Good health to all.

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Re: confused

Thanks for the info Emma.

Moderator
Community Manager

Re: confused

Hi aliceinwonderland,

Welcome to the forums where I am sure you will get lots of support from the many informed users of this site. The feelings you are having at the moment are quite normal as I am sure other users will tell you. It might be a good idea to take a good friend or relative with you to your next appointment as often we don't always register what is being said to us in this sort of situation, your supporter could perhaps make some notes of what you are told so you can refer to them later.

You may find useful BCC's resource pack for the newly diagnosed, the pack is free and contains lots of useful information regarding diagnosis, treatment and so on. To obtain a copy just follow the link below and a copy will be posted out to you.
http://www.breastcancercare.org.uk//content.php?page_id=7514

If you feel you need to speak to someone in confidence before your appointment on Thursday then do give the helpline a call the staff here are all either breast care nurses or people with personal experience of breast care issues. The number is 0808 800 6000 lines open Monday-Friday 9am - 5pm and Saturdays 9am - 2pm.

Hope this helps. Kind regards,
Emma, Moderator

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Re: confused

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Re: confused

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RoadRunner
Member

Re: confused

Hi there,

First of all, please do not feel silly for being emotional! It's a very emotional time that you are going through, and you would be very odd indeed if you felt normal.

When I had my appointment at the breast clinic they were able to tell me straight away that I had a problem. I was told that they take a quick look at a few cells from the biopsy (as opposed to the closer look they take later on). In my case they could not tell whether it was cancer or pre-cancer (that came at the follow-up appointment) but friends of mine were all told it was cancer for certain on the day. Do not be worried by how fast everything happens - this is how it should be. I know it is difficult to deal with, you will no doubt be in a state of shock just now. Be assured that you will find plenty of support on this site.

Sorry I can't help with the other problem.

Best wishes for your hospital appointment. Make sure you take someone with you, as it is very difficult to take in everything they tell you. Take a notebook too so you can write down any questions you have and note the answers.

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confused

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