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Mammogram Letter Wording

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 4244
Joined: Feb 2009

Got my results back in the mail today and was wondering about the wording and if you other ladies have the same.  It used to be that "we are pleased blah blah and it is normal."  But this letter said "we are pleased blah blah and no evidence of cancer."  Just thought that was really strange that the wording was changed that way.  I'm glad that all is "normal" but the wording bothers me especially when someone has had a diagnosis of another type.  Just would like some of your thoughts.  Maybe I'm too over sensitive, but it's been bothering me all day and I'm not sure if I should call them or not to make sure that the new wording is just that "new wording", but it just seems insensitive to me.

Kim

cinreag
Posts: 154
Joined: Oct 2012

Hi Kim, sorry you are uncomfortable with the wording of your mammogram letter. If it is bothering you and obviously it is, I think you should give them a call. I have only ever had 1 mammogram and I didnt get a letter I got a call to come back in for a biopsy, so I am not familiar with how the letters are or were worded. Best of luck and I love your new pic!!! Cindy

PatchAdams
Posts: 272
Joined: Nov 2011

My doctor's nurse hands me the letter in office prior to the doctor coming in to examine me.  It's called the 'Happy to Inform you' letter....... and I don't think I've ever read past that.

Normal changes as we age. Things shrink, stretch and sag. The coloring around the nipple will actually fade to skin color in most post menopausal women. Instead of trying to explain all that 'getting older stuff', maybe they just decided to go with 'no cancer'.   This WAS a follow up, correct?  They were looking specifically for cancer, correct?  

All in all, great news!  CONGRATS! 

 

Chelsea71
Posts: 1170
Joined: Sep 2012

Hi Kim. I'm guessing that they have changed the wording for all women. I doubt that they take the time to send a different letter to women who have had a cancer diagnosis. But, you never know.

I think we are all very sensitive. Last year, before Steve went in for HIPEC, I was extremely on edge. He went to the dentist for a routine exam and cleaning. When the appointment was over, his hygienist walked him out to the waiting area. I inquired as to how it went. She explained to me that she was concerned about a "suspicious" root. Wanted the dentist to take a look prior to Steve going in for his surgery. I immediately went from 0 to 10. Thought she was suggesting cancer. Looking back, I'm sure I seemed crazy. I just find that I am always on guard. Braced for trouble like it's lurking around every corner. It does surprise me that hospital staff at the cancer clinic are not more sensitive. Steve's PDN has left several messages asking him to "call immediately". Once it was after five by the time we got the message and had to wait until the following day. As it turned out she was just wondering if he'd completed his blood work for chemo. Anyways, I myself have not yet received a cancer diagnosis but as a caregiver, I too, am very sensitive to things like choice of wording. Opposites must attract because Steve does not pick up on or worry at all about these things.

Congratulations on the mammogram.

Chelsea

Deena11
Posts: 193
Joined: Nov 2012

Kim, it does sound strange to me since you were going in for a routine mammogram.  I had my mammogram after I completed my chemo treatment.  I even had the hair loss.  I had talked to the technician about completing my chemo to explain my hair loss.  My "good to go" letter didn't say there was "no evidence of cancer".  It said my results were normal.  Had you discussed your colon cancer with the technician?  If so, maybe she wanted the verbiage to say there was no evidence of cancer to ease your mind. 

Deena

herdizziness's picture
herdizziness
Posts: 3398
Joined: Apr 2010

Probably someone in legal decided on the change of the wording.  Likely saying no evidence of cancer is less sueable then if they state everything is normal.  In California they now have to tell you if your breast mass is too dense to tell if there is evidence of cancer etc.  so I'm thinking it has something to do with legal issues and the same wording is sent to everyone whose mammograms show normal.

Winter Marie

Annabelle41415's picture
Annabelle41415
Posts: 4244
Joined: Feb 2009

Thank you all for your replies.  Just thought I'd call them to see what they said and it was due to new policies for the "radiation department".  Told her that someone who has already been diagnosed doesn't like to see that word in any report and she agreed.  She also said that sometimes the radiation department will go on two or three paragraphs about stuff we know nothing about to just be another way of saying that everything is "normal".  Think you are right WinterMarie - it's all about legallity. 

Kim

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