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wire localization, breast biopsy, lumpectomy

mana1's picture
mana1
Posts: 16
Joined: Oct 2011

i am one week way from this procedure. i have read everything i can. i don't know if i can go through this alone; and i can't seem to get a straight answer. do i have breast cancer? no one says yes.. no one says no..

camul's picture
camul
Posts: 2034
Joined: Dec 2010

The good thing is that it sounds like they are going to take out the lump when they do the biopsy. So hopefully the lump will be benign, which is what we all hope for. It is probably a good thing that they are not saying until they know you would hate to be told no, then it comes back positive, and so many lumps are benign.

As far as going through this alone, you are never alone once you come to this site. We are all here to support each other, as we have all been through this.

Prayers and positive energy coming your way.

robang13's picture
robang13
Posts: 333
Joined: Apr 2011

The procedure isn't that horrible. I went through it in Feb. Are you going for the wire localization and the lumpectomy at the same time, or going for the wire localization and biopsy first? I ask because I was supposed to have the wire and biopsy first but they couldn't get to the lump to extract the tissue with just the wire. I had to go in and have the wire localization and lumpectomy with the wire in. If it's what I had it isn't horrid, just uncomfortable. My lump was under the breast close to the nipple so they had to go from the underneath of my breast to get to it. It was actually comical to watch a tech and a nurse try to do this. The tech was on her knees and the nurse was upside down. It was quite a sight to see!! After the wire was inserted I waited to go into surgery. Since my wire had to go through my breast it felt a little weird having something sticking out of the top. It didn't hurt, it was just uncomfortable. The surgery itself wasn't bad as far as surgeries go. I had to wait a few days to get my results.

Hopefully you will get good news. They won't know until the biopsy is done whether it is cancer or not. Stay positive until then!!! Remember you are never alone!! We are here for you every step of the way!! I wish I found this board before my surgery like you did. These woman saved my sanity!!

If you have any other questions about the procedure please ask. I will be happy to tell you what I can!

Angela

mana1's picture
mana1
Posts: 16
Joined: Oct 2011

thanks for the responses! the lump the found is small and back next to my breast bone ~ apparently that is why they are doing the wire thing.... and i am supposed to go to surgery right after the wire is in place. i suppose i should be encouraged... if not for the modern advances, in my mothers era, a lump such as mine would not have been discovered for 10-15 more years.... thanks for the luck, love and energy.

disneyfan2008
Posts: 5332
Joined: Oct 2010

I had biopsy and some clip left in then about 2-3 wks later surgery..wire locator done just prior to lumpectomy! NO ONE told me what is was..I am not sure if all are the same but with mine: I sat in chair pushed up to mammo type device-3 or 4 people in room with me..once it was done I had to lay still (arm up over my head) until operating room.

MAYBE mine is completely different..

i'll be checking back

Denise

Nat1000's picture
Nat1000
Posts: 40
Joined: Aug 2010

Your not alone, with all your friends on here. But I don't understand exactly what they are doing. Didn't the doctor do I biopsy in his office, then send it off to the lab, and it came back negative, or positive? Then they do the wire localization right before your lumpectomy, to know exactly where and how large the lump is? That's what they did to me. He biopsied me in his office, mine came back positive and we went from there.

Nat

mana1's picture
mana1
Posts: 16
Joined: Oct 2011

that is my frustration ~ had mamo, went for 2nd mamo, had an ultrasound, had an mri, had a core needle biopsy, now they have scheduled me for this wire and lumpectomy... have never received a diagonis... in fact, i had to call for the core needle biopsy results, because they didn't call me.... could not find a doctor to talk to me (on a friday afternoon) finally, the technician faxed me the pathology report (she would not tell me on the phone) it says "atypical ductal hyperplasia with associated numerous microcalcifications - negative for malignancy" i tried to talk to my regular doctor, and to an oncologist (made appointments to just "talk".... i think that annoyed them!) i was told to just do what they tell me to do and get it handled.... geez!

cinnamonsmile
Posts: 1049
Joined: Dec 2010

I went through something very similar to you. The oncologist I saw explained that there is a continuum of cell mutation and sort of goes in stages from a normal cell to a cancerous cells. I had atypical ductal hyperplasia. The oncologist described it as abnormal cells in the duct that he and most in the profession that I have encountered consider it a precancerous cell in the milk duct. My lump was very large, about the size of a breakfast sausage link. It was all contained within the milk duct and was filled with DCIS (cancer within the milk ducts and atypical ductal hyperplasia. The insenisitivity of your doctors is just bad. They should be there to answer your questions. Most of my doctors were more than willing to answer my questions.My radiologist called me with the results, answered questions, etc, and recommended a lumpectomy because she was not convinced that there wasn't cancer somewhere else in the lump.

The morning of my lumpectomy, I went to the outpatient surgical area. Then I was wheeled up to mammography were the radioloist inserted two guide wires (with some numbing agents!) around each side of the lump to help the surgeon find the spot. It didn't hurt, but I looked down and saw the blood coming out which I would rather not have seen. When they were in place, I was wheeled back down to surgery. After the lumpectomy, I went home. I was told to wear a bra 24 hours a day, given ice packs to apply, and vicodin for pain. From what I read, most women aren't too bothered by it. I, however, was in lots of pain. It took me three weeks to get back to normal, but even then it was sore, like I'd been punched. It took about a week for my surgeon to call back with the results. First she told me over the phone and was very reassuring. She was supposed to be off the next week, but she came in special for me to discuss the cancer and possible treatments.

There is a wealth of information at the american cancer website. Just search for breast cancer. Or you can call the american cancer society directly. They have people to answer questions, help find info.They emailed all the info on breast cancer I needed. The lady I talked with was wonderful.

Good luck on your upcoming surgery. If you don't like how you are being treated by y our medical team, if you can (insurance, etc) you can always go for a second opinion somewhere else. I certainly did not like some drs. I had, so I found new ones.

Here's hoping you get benign results.

robang13's picture
robang13
Posts: 333
Joined: Apr 2011

"negative for malignancy" if it states this, doesn't it mean NOT cancerous? I can tell you this, my aunt, who has had breast cancer twice from calcifications: DCIS in situ, has also had negative malignancies and still had them removed. She has had 2 surgeries where they still wanted to remove the lumps. The reason for the wire is so they can go to the exact spot w/o cutting more than they need. Do you have a breast surgeon? One that specializes in breast cancer? If not, I would find one and take him all the reports you have and get his opinion. A surgeon has a different way of doing things than a regular doctor. Most times they are more sensitive to your feelings.

Read this article: http://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/avon_foundation_breast_center/breast_cancers_other_conditions/atypical_ductal_hyperplasia.html

It seems to me that you do NOT have breast cancer! It says here that you are more at risk to develop it but do NOT have it now!

Please find a surgeon who will help you!! Where are you located? Maybe someone on here can give you the name of one.

Angela

jamiegww's picture
jamiegww
Posts: 384
Joined: Dec 2009

My fine needle aspiration and my core biopsy both came back as atypical ductal hyperplasia. I researched online and got the impression that it was just something to get rechecked every six months but my surgeon wasn't satisfied with those results and actually told me that it felt like cancer to him. By the time I woke from my lumpectomy, the pathologist had already found the lump to be cancerous. I am so thankful that my surgeon didn't accept the first two biopsy results. My cancer was stage 3A / grade 3 / triple negative with 5 positive lymph nodes so if I had waited another six months, I might have progressed to stage 4.

Nat1000's picture
Nat1000
Posts: 40
Joined: Aug 2010

Don't dare just do what they tell you. My biopsy came back malignant, which means cancer. Negative for malignancy can mean you have a lump that can just be removed, that doesn't mean you need a lumpectomy. The first thing you need to do is take that pathology report to a surgeon. Ins. will pay for a second opinion. You need a diagnosis, before you can make any kind of decision. Don't you let anybody cut on you without a diagnosis! A lot of women have lumpy breast, and it's not cancer. I don't want to scare you, but don't let them touch you without a diagnosis and a explanation of what they want to do. They were going to give me a lumpectomy until they found out my "diagnosed" cancer was too big. Anyway the wire localization was to be done 1hr. before my lump., so that my surgeon would know exactly where the tumor was, and the size of it. That is not suppose to be done only for a biopsy. I ended up having to have a mastectomy. But I knew that my cancer was stage 3 and my lump was 3.5cm.(that's big) My point is for you to find a reputable surgeon. One that will explain everything to you. I mean EVERYTHING. Please keep me informed.

Nat

Nat1000's picture
Nat1000
Posts: 40
Joined: Aug 2010

I forgot to tell you, don't dare let them talk to you like that. Tell them you want everything explained to you, where you can understand it. Change doctors as often as necessary, for you to feel comfortable. The number one thing in this cancer mess is for you to be with a doctor that you understand, and feel comfortable with. And your number one question to the next doctor you talk to is, "do I have breast cancer?" Then you ask what kind and how many cm? Don't be afraid to ask as many questions as you want. God Bless you!

Nat

mamolady's picture
mamolady
Posts: 795
Joined: May 2011

"atypical ductal hyperplasia" is what they sometimes call pre-cancer cells. The sampling may not have been enough to have the diagnosis? I am not sure either. They shouldn't tell you to just do what they say. You may want to get another opinion or at least have a different oncologist go over you reports and consult with you.
It may be better to have someone with you so it doesn't feel like "you" and "them".

Good luck and keep us posted.
Cindy

Tux's picture
Tux
Posts: 541
Joined: Aug 2009

I had a similar procedure 2 yrs ago. I had the wire loc, then the lumpectomy--all in the same day & was home by 3 p.m. I know the wire loc sounds yucky, but I had no pain--actually hardly any discomfort. The techs & nurses were great & explained everything they did. I was just so glad to have it over with in one day. Also, I went back to the doc for the results 3-4 days later & for them to check the incision for the lumpectomy.

After the lumpectomy, I "wedged" myself on the couch & slept there for a few days. It
prevented me from rolling over on the incision. Pain was surprisingly minimal. I do not think I took any pain meds.

I want to wish you the best, and let you know that we are here for you any time. Good luck!

Nat1000's picture
Nat1000
Posts: 40
Joined: Aug 2010

She hasn't been diagnosed with cancer, she might not need a lumpectomy. She needs a diagnosis.

Nat

mana1's picture
mana1
Posts: 16
Joined: Oct 2011

thank you for your input and all your information. i am actually in salt lake city, and this is the huntsman cancer institute... supposed to be one of the more advanced cancer reasearch facilities in the country. i have felt, however, that they so routinely deal with this they have become desensitived. although salt lake is a large metropolitan city.... it is a small town.. because i didn't feel so good about the conversations, i called the other major medical facility (intermountain health center)... their response was 'stick with huntsman' i really want to talk more about this to someone. it was my reason for reaching out to you. i am taking all this advice to heart and going to sleep on it.... the one more thing i am dealing with is.. my partner and roommate (and really, my only source of support) says he thinks they are ordering more and more tests just to get money for the insurance companies and their research... so... no help there! thanks again. i'll be back soon.

Double Whammy's picture
Double Whammy
Posts: 2272
Joined: Jun 2010

The biopsy report is a diagnosis - it's just a diagnosis on the tissue that was biopsied. That's only part of the lump. They don't know what is in the rest of the lump until they remove it (lumpectomy) and a pathologist reviews that tissue. Then a full diagnosis can be made. My assumption is that because there were atypical cells in the biopsy specimens, there's enough suspicion to want to look at the rest of the lump because there could be malignant cells there (or not). So - from the biopsy results you have atypical cells but no malignancy is present. Whether you actually have cancer can't be determined until all of the lump has been examined.

Most of us (me included) have had biopsies that showed malignant cells, so either the rest of the lump (lumpectomy) or the entire breast (mastectomy) had to be removed surgically. Even tho we had a cancer diagnosis before surgery, we didn't know how extensive it was until surgery. If we had a lumpectomy, there could have been more cancer cells in the margins requiring additional surgery. If we had cancer and had either lumpectomy or mastectomy, lymph nodes also had to be sampled and removed.

I'm guessing here, but my guess is you could go into surgery and have that lump removed and it could all be atypical cells and they'd be done. Or if they find malignant cells in the lump, they'd check the margins and remove some lymph nodes. But they can't know anything, until they have the tissue to examine microscopically and they can't do it while it's still in your breast.

Waiting is difficult. I hope everything goes well for you.

Suzanne

robang13's picture
robang13
Posts: 333
Joined: Apr 2011

At times I'm sure it feels like they are trying to get money from your insurance, but I would rather have all the tests needed to make sure 100% I didn't have cancer. If they only did one test and it came back negative and let it go at that you could have cancer growing out of control. What you need is some-one close to "talk" with you. At the cancer center there should be some-one who can explain everything to you. Where I went there was some-one from the american cancer society that met with me to see if I had any questions. Maybe you could call the center and ask if there is a liaison there that can help you understand what is going on? There is nothing worse than feeling like you are in the dark about your situation! Please let us know what is going on so we can help you too!

Angela

mana1's picture
mana1
Posts: 16
Joined: Oct 2011

i am so grateful for all of your input... i already feel like i am much more able to make a reasonable decision... just based upon the conversations on this site.. i am truly amazed at the difference in the way i feel (from just a few days ago) i don't feel like i am hiding under a dark blanket.. i'll be back soon

disneyfan2008
Posts: 5332
Joined: Oct 2010

who sent you for all this? from Mammo results?

I had all the above for DCIS-I was told not GOOD but not bad...I didnt' know what that meant util I LOOKED IT up..saw "cancer" in same paragraph.

I will check back to see if you post any updates and WILL be thinking of you...

Denise

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