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What Now?

Hoot Owl's picture
Hoot Owl
Posts: 35
Joined: May 2013

Hi All,

I just received the news yesterday that my microcalcification is cancer.  Im scheduled for a lumpectomy on Wednesday and I am scared to death!  I have a mammogram every year and this year they saw a very small cluster.  Last Wednesday, my the surgeon removed the entire cluster and yesterday the results came back. Can anybody share with me what to expect with the lumpectomy? And...what about spreading to the lymph nodes? When is chemo vs. radiation needed.  I'm overwhelmed!

coco2008's picture
coco2008
Posts: 393
Joined: May 2013

Once you have had your lumpectomy and path results come back showing clear margins, you should be instructed to make an appt with a medical oncologist.  This is the doctor that will run any other necessary tests and then set up your treatment plan.  Hold tight to your patience.  It will take time to get the appointment, time for test results to come back. and time for treatments to begin.  This waiting can be stressful, but it will be better if you can occupy your mind with reading, movies, or anything you enjoy that will keep your mind occupied.

Keep us up dated and post any questions or concerns you have during your journey.

Rague
Posts: 3155
Joined: Aug 2009

No one here can tell you what your TX plan will be.  We can only tell you what our TX (treatment) plan was - your Dr will be the one to tell you about your plan.

There are so many variables that go into each individual's plan.  2 (or more) Drs will have different approaches to what is best for you.  There are many 'things' that go into the decisions - type of cancer, stage, node involvement (positive or negative), ER/PR/HER 2 status, over all health, family history aare but a few the 'things' that go into the decision of what the TX plan will be.

I can not tell you anything about lymphectomy expectations - I had a UMX (unilateral mastectomy) as lumpectomy was never and option for meand  neoadjuvant chemo, adjuvant chemo and rads were always a known - just which and how many was an option.  That's not true for all - some do not have chemo, some do not do rads, some do both, some do nothing.  Some only do estrogen blockers, some don't need them, some of us will be on them forever (has to do with your ER/PR status).  Some will need a year of Herceptin (HER 2 status).  There are so many variables.

My TX plan was very different that what your can be.  I found an enlarged node under arm one night that had not been there the day before (yes - IBC [Imflammatory Breast Cancer] can present itself that fast) and saw my PA the next week (she was out of town on vacation) at 11, was at radiology at 1 that afternoon for a new mammo (last one was done 2 mths before), had mammo then a sono and biopsy by 3.  At 8 the next morning the radiologist called me with the path. we expected - IBC.  That was on Fri.  On Mon. I sas my surgeon, Wed I saw my Radds Dr and on Thurs saw my Chemo Dr (there was a mix up in scheduling - should have seen Chemo oon Wed and Rads on Thurs).  There then started the scans, and tests.  I started neoadjuvant chemo (before surgery) 18 days after DX and the day after port was put in.  Did 4 rounds of DD A/C, 2 weeks later had UMX, 3 weeks later started 12 weekly Taxol.  A week later started 25 rads.  Started Femara (estrogen blocker - I'm ER+) a week after starting rads and I will be on it forever.  I'm still riding NED (No Evidence of Disease) as far as I know.  There are several others here who are IBC but none have said that they had the same TX plan I had.

Gain all the info you can but it is between you and your Drs what is best for you.  Ask all the questions you want - arm yourself with knowledge.  Knowledge is strength but you do not NEED to expect to have the same experiences that anyone else has had.

Winyan - The Power Within

Susan 

DebbyM's picture
DebbyM
Posts: 3295
Joined: Oct 2009

You won't know if you need chemo or rads until after your lumpectomy and you get the pathology report.  Although normally, with a lumpectomy, you usually have rads.  Chemo is usually if you have positive nodes.

I wasn't in a lot of pain after my lumpectomy.  I only took, I think, 1 or 2 pain pills and slept a lot with them.  I was sore, but, not really all that bad, so, I didn't take any more of the pain pills.  I started radiaition about 6 weeks after my lumpectomy surgery. 

Try to not worry.  Ask any questions and we will all help you however we can.

Good luck,

Debby

Hoot Owl's picture
Hoot Owl
Posts: 35
Joined: May 2013

Thank you to all who responded to my post.  My head is up and I'm hitting this head on!  Anyone who believes in the power of prayer....I'd covet your prayers!

coco2008's picture
coco2008
Posts: 393
Joined: May 2013

You are on my prayer list.  Please let us know what is happening and how you are doing.

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