grandmagail Member Posts: 28
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
I had an MRI on both my breasts yesterday and the surgeons office called with the results today. They have found more spots on the other breast and a small spot behind my nipple on my right breast (which is the one that I knew had cancer). I no longer have an option of lumpectomy. I can have a biopsy of the other places or I can have a double mastectomy. I am pretty sure that I will just go with the double mastectomy. I'm really worried that I have that many places and I know I just have to work my way through one step at a time, but this is really frightening.Any input as to what this means for me? Thank you for your messages. They haved helped me a lot. Gail


  • cabbott
    cabbott Member Posts: 1,039 Member
    Frightened? I was a basketcase when they called me. LIke I didn't stop trembling and crying for a week or more. Or maybe it was a solid month. It is all a blur now, but I was fairly sure I was doomed. That was almost 5 years ago. Since then I have learned it is normal to be scared witless when the doctor is talking about cancer and surgery. I'm getting better about the panicking part, but I still lose it now and then. Find fellow survivors to talk to and support folks for hugs. Take time to cry. Pray helps! Then tackle the decisions the best you can.

    It sounds like they are pretty sure that the one breast needs a mastectomy. Rest assured that they would not recommend that lightly. Talk to your doctor about your fears. I believe that he would do whatever you choose. I know my doctor told me that there was no wrong choice. I had to be the one to choose since no one can really predict which one is best. When I had to(and continue to have to) make tough decisions about treatment where no one really knows, I choose to do what helps me sleep best at night. I think about how I would feel if the cancer reoccurred sometime in the future. Would I be able to say at that time that I had done all I could to stop it? Would I be content at that time with my decisions? I usually choose the aggressive path if both are equal, but that's me and my way. Right now is not a bad time for a second opinion if you think it would be helpful. Some doctors do chemotherapy BEFORE surgery, others after, and some both. That might give you more information. Did they do much testing on the first biopsy to see if the cancer is ER+ or -, HER+ or -, highly aggressive or not? Did the MRI suggest it is in the nodes? How large is the largest lump? These are things doctors would consider when they try to predict the course of the cancer. Removing the primary spot helps. It helps a lot. It keeps us from suffering from primary breast cancer. It slows down the progress of the disease. In very early cases of stage 0 and stage 1 cancer, it may even effect a cure, but even in stage 4 cancer it helps to remove the primary cancer. But removing more tissue than necessary does not lengthen life or slow down the progression of cancer. I had a mastectomy because the cancer was showing up in more than one spot in the same breast. I didn't have a bilateral since the other breast was normal, but given the type of cancer I had a bilateral was an option. So far, the left is still there and so am I. Was it the right choice? I have had sleepless nights, esp. when a mammogram suggested a possible problem and the biopsy could not be done: the spot was too small! That was 4 years ago. I'm still waiting for that spot to grow big enough. So far, so good. The doctors tell me that it still looks normal. Each of us has our own set of cancer descriptors and our own set of worries. Talk to your doctors and do what works for you.
  • LadyKarenM
    LadyKarenM Member Posts: 2 Member
    I ended up having several spots on my mamograms two on the left and one on the right. There was a bit of confusion at the time who was managing the treatment so I ended up having a mastectomy on the left side. Then it showed the one spot on the left side was invasive so I was going to have more treatment. I was wanting to just start the chemo and worry about the right breast later but my oncolosit said I needed to do the biopsy on the right spot. It was done and was possible Ductal Cancer and recommended an open biopsy. At that point I just decided for my sanity to just do the mastectomy on the right side as well. Talk to your doctors and see what they recommend. Trust your reaction to what they say. I agree that the decision that lets you sleep at night is the one you make. There is no wrong decision. Take time to sit and enjoy the things you love and when you get calm in that space see what decision works for you. It will be the right one. It isn't an easy process. Take care. karen
  • Skybuf
    Skybuf Member Posts: 143
    Hi Gail, (my sisters name was Gail) love that name. I had invasive bc so had no choice but to have a mastectomy, left side. Did all the chemo and rads, I wish now the surgeon had have suggested a bilateral mastectomy and I would be over it now....but then I did loose some strength in my L arm.....but now opting to go again and have the R one off in Jan/Feb....just more semetrical for me, I am large breasted and with age it "sags" so to have it off and wear a lighter prosthesis works for me.....but like the other gals said, everyones different and we need to make those decisions ourselves. I pray you make the right decision for you and yes talk to your doctors and Oncologists, surgeons everyone that will listen, get different opinions, I am seeing a Plastic Surgeon this month for his opinion, even though I told my Surgeon she will do it. So check it out and may you make the right decision for YOU! Friends and family can be helpful too and point out things we don't think of........:)
  • chessie
    chessie Member Posts: 40
    Did you have an ultrasound of the left breast? I've heard breast MRI sometimes have a high false positive rate - which leads to unnecessary biopsies. I'd get a second opinion - get another radiologist to look at films, one very familiar with breast MRI's and I'd go see another breast specialist before making a decision. If they are still unsure, I'd opt for a biopsy of the suspicious areas of the left side. Then, to be sure, if a positive lump is found, they can do a sentinel node biopsy to see if there's spread to the nodes. Treat this aggressively, but go in with as much information as possible. I've been down this very bumpy will get through it. Best wishes.