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Topic: Hard lump

Forum: Not Diagnosed but Worried — Meet others worried about developing breast cancer for the first time.

Posted on: Sep 24, 2009 03:49PM

2worried wrote:

Hi.  I recently found a hard, round lump in my left breast.  It doesn't move.  I found another one that felt just like it in the right breast a few months ago, and had that one removed.  It was benign, but the surgeon said it was good that it was removed, as the biopsy showed it had fibrous tissue and microcalcifications.  Anyway, they did a diagnostic mammogram and an ultrasound on the most recent lump on the left breast and the radiologist said he "thinks" it is benign and that it is likely a lipoma.  He recommends having it re-checked in 6 months.  My general practitioner as well as the surgeon agree that waiting 6 months is reasonable.  I've done some reading on lipomas and most of what I've read refers to them as "soft".  This lump is definitely not soft.  My GP said it felt like a BB or a rock. 

Have any of you had experience with lipomas before, and if so were they hard or soft?  I'm confused about them recommending a 6 month wait when the other lump felt just the same and the doctors didn't want to wait that long to remove it.  They were not able to see that one on either the ultrasound or the mammogram.  Maybe it is different this time because they are able to see this one on both the mammogram and the ultrasound? 

I have had 3 excisional biopsies over the last few years and they have all been benign, but I'm still concerned about waiting 6 months to check this one again.  Am I just being overly concerned?  Thanks for your help.

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Posts 1 - 24 (24 total)

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Sep 25, 2009 01:07PM moonbuddy wrote:

I don't know anything about a lipoma, but someone here, from Wichita, Ks, just had one removed i think.  I remember, 'cause she answered on my post and was so nice. 

The only thing i've ever had that felt like a BB and i have a lot of them now, were calcifications. 

I would just tell my doc., i'm not comfortable with 6 mos., would rather have a biopsy.  But others would know more. 

 I'll go see if i can find her post and get back to you.

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Sep 25, 2009 01:11PM moonbuddy wrote:

Her name is Sheila1951 and she was going to breast specialist to talk about excision of intraductal lipoma.

Good luck!

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Sep 27, 2009 03:02PM Leslie1962 wrote:

I also had a very hard lump appear out of the blue within two weeks of a normal annual check-up. Mammogram and ultrasound were negative. I pushed for a biopsy and what came back was invasive breast cancer. In my opinion you should not wait. My doctor/s also wanted to wait for six months even with a pathology report (from needle aspiration) stating "atypical cells" and the hard lump that was not going away and I found that to be unacceptable. Be your own advocate and push for the testing. Sorry, don't want to scare you but you do need to know what is going on.

Dx 9/3/2009, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIIc, Grade 3, 11/18 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2+
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Sep 27, 2009 03:54PM apple wrote:

i have a lipoma.. it's not hard altho it's  firm.  better safe than sorry.

peace and love, apple - ..... Mary Magdalen

Dx 4/10/2008, IDC, 5cm, Stage IV, Grade 3, 4/9 nodes, mets, ER+, HER2+
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Sep 27, 2009 04:07PM Merilee wrote:

Don't wait, I had 3 lumps removed (all benign) before the 4th one turned up cancer. It did not show up on my mammogram 6 months prior. Don't wait.

breastcancerbeast.blogspot.com & http://downsyduderescueranch.blogspot.com

Dx 4/4/2011, ILC, 1cm, Stage I, 0/9 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Sep 27, 2009 04:14PM cakeisgreat wrote:

If I had any kind of lump on my breast, hard, soft or whatever, I would be getting it removed SO fast. Echoing "apple,"  better safe than sorry.   Smile I went for mammo with no problems/lumps (just to get a baseline) and cancer was there without me even knowing it.  Doctors are smart, great, and can be trying to spare you unnecessary procedures, but they also can be wrong by just looking on an xray or mammo.  If it ends up a problem, they still get to go home and sleep at night while you end up having to pick up pieces of a six-month wait and possibly further growth if it's cancer.

I have always been an advocate of "preventative" but that's just me :)  hope my two cents help?

~Cake (is always great!)

Dx 6/9/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage Ia, Grade 2, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR-
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Sep 27, 2009 05:21PM dogsaver wrote:

I agree, dont wait. i had lump that seemed like it was just there one day. my biopsy came back that is was cancer. the lump didnt show on a mammo 3 mos earlier so it obviously got bigger fast. get the biopsy. if its benign, thats great. if not then the sooner its gone the better. best wishes!~

lumpectomy, 5 day multi catheter brachy radiation, finished 4 rounds of Taxotere/cytoxan Nov 17th. Under the care of a holistic oncologist as well "IF WE COULDNT LAUGH WE WOULD ALL GO INSANE"- Jimmy Buffet

Dx 5/26/2009, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIa, Grade 2, 2/22 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Sep 27, 2009 05:25PM JustmeAlicia wrote:

I agree with everyone else don't wait!!  I had 2 previous biopsies with atypia.  A new lump appeared and it was cancer.  It did not show up on my mammography or ultrasound 10 months ago.  Be proactive - early detection is key!!!

Good luck to you ~

BLMax with TE's 9/29/09 Chemo X8, Tamoxifen 5 years - 2 down, 3 to go ! Live LIFE ....

Dx 8/27/2009, IDC, 4cm, Stage II, Grade 3, 0/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Sep 27, 2009 08:43PM chiquita wrote:

2WORRIED

Please don't wait...I had the same problem with my Dr. and went right to another for a second opinion and after the biopsy it was cancer...you have to look for your self and early is better than late...go for a biopsy...God Bless You.

God is my best friend, he will be with me forever!!!!

Dx 9/15/2008, IDC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 0/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Sep 28, 2009 10:27AM, edited Feb 10, 2010 01:13PM by AmyMarie

I agree with all the ladies on here about not waiting. I recently found a lump on my right breast and it was very firm . I went and had a mammo and ultrasound done which said probably benign and to wait 6 months ...I was not happy with the word probably or waiting for 6 months . IT was just to serious of an issue to just tell me to wait 6 months. I felt like a ticking time bomb. I demanded a referral to a breast specialist who did a core biopsy on my breast and the good news is mine did turn out to be benign fibroadenoma which can be firm or soft. So yes I came out with a great result in the end but I am still very happy that I pushed and went for the biopsy ...it made me feel so in control of my life and health . I am having my fibroadenoma removed on Oct.16th which I am also happy about. Please if you are uncomfortable with anything tell someone! Tell the doctor's NO i don't feel comfortable with waiting this out....this is to important. I told my doctor look this is my LIFE we are talking about I don't want to hear probably!
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Sep 28, 2009 10:52AM chelev wrote:

I have a large lipoma on my collarbone and it is definitely not hard.  Get it checked out further!!

chelev - TC - 2 rounds (allergic!), Rads - 33 rounds. Oncotype score - 27. Tamoxifen, Jan 2010-April 2013 - too many side effects! BRCA Negative. "If we couldn't laugh, we would all go insane" - Jimmy Buffet

Dx 2/14/2009, IDC, 3cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-Surgery 02/27/2009 Lumpectomy (Right); Lymph Node Removal: Sentinel Lymph Node Dissection (Right)Chemotherapy 03/12/2009 Cytoxan, TaxotereRadiation Therapy 05/29/2009 ExternalHormonal Therapy 01/01/2010 Tamoxifen
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Sep 28, 2009 10:02PM, edited Sep 28, 2009 10:04PM by 2worried

Thanks so much to all of you for responding to me!  It's hard for me to understand how the doctors decide which lump can wait and which can't.  It may be possible that they are less worried this time because all of the other biopsies were benign.  There are times when I feel less concerned about this lump because the others were benign as well.  But, you are all correct when you point out that just because the other lumps were benign does not make this one benign. 

Apple and Chelev, thanks for telling me about your lipomas.  This lump is definitely hard as a rock, which does seem unusual for a lipoma based on what I've read. 

The last thing I want is yet another surgery - I haven't completely healed from the last one, but I agree with those of you who said that six months seems too long to wait.  I know that this lump will likely be benign as well, still I can't help but think "what if it isn't".  I think I will make an appointment with my doctor and discuss this with him in person.  I haven't spoken to either him or my surgeon since the mammogram and ultrasound report came back.  I received calls from the surgeon's nurse and the GP's medical assistant saying they think it can wait 6 months, but that doesn't tell me why they think it can wait. 

I don't know how long it's been there.  I didn't notice it during a breast exam.  I was sitting at the computer, had an itch and that's when I felt it right through my clothing.  It's not very large - about the size of a pea, but it's very hard.  I'm not sure that it's safe to leave it 6 months just because it's small either.  I will definitely talk this over with my doctor and let him know I'm concerned with that long of a wait. 

Thank you all again!  I'll let you know what the doctor says.  Best wishes to all of you!

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Sep 30, 2009 01:37AM angeladp wrote:

I am in the same situation now. I had an assessment done on an abnormal mammogram today. I had more mammograms and an ultrasound. The radiologist says there's nothing to worry about, he thinks it's glandular lumps. The breast physician was concerned that there was thickening in the lump I could feel and she found one I didn't now about which she also said felt like there was fibrous thickening in it, but after talking with the radiologist she changed her  mind. She said if the lumps were still there in 3 months to go back and they'd look at it again.They've been there for 6 weeks already (maybe longer, I only noticed it 6 weeks ago) and are not going away - if anything the one I can feel is getting bigger. I'm also not happy with "thinks it's benign" and the fact that the 2 doctors didn't agree initially.I want to know it's definitely benign, not just "think it's benign". The radiographer says there is nothing to biopsy, but I can feel one lump (its the size of a quails egg), so can my husband and the breast physician can feel 2 that are thickening and she says there are several more lumps in both breasts, so there is definitely something there!

This was all done at a breast screening clinic - I think I'll see my GP and ask for a second opinion and push for a biopsy to be absolutely certain. It doesn't help that the letter the clinic gave me said there was no evidence of cancer BUT that not all cancers can be seen through radiography, and if I was worried to see my doctor immediately. Not exactly confidence inspiring, I must say. The last six weeks have been hell - and I still don't have a definitive answer.I just want to get a definite all clear so I can rest easy.

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Sep 30, 2009 02:22AM Jaebo wrote:

 Hey all....new to this site....hope everyone is doing well....I have been recently getting coughs a lot for few mos now then they go away for couple weeks then they come back...doctors keep telling me oh its just a cold...then this lump under my underarm forms...hard and is really sore...first I thought gross pimple..cause I don't tend to break out with pimples and such (especially below the face),,but it hurts like bruised..and keeps getting lil bigger in last 2 weeks which i discovered it...hate going to the doctor for every lil thing that you or yourself think that there MIGHT be something wrong....should I go to the doctor and stop feeling silly or what?.....sorry for the book story didn't mean to make it this long......
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Sep 30, 2009 06:59PM cakeisgreat wrote:

Jaebo--you can never be too cautious.  I'd DEFINITELY go get it checked out :)  Just my two cents.

~Cake (is always great!)

Dx 6/9/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage Ia, Grade 2, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR-
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Oct 1, 2009 02:49AM angeladp wrote:

I saw my GP today and when I told him what had happened at the breast clinic he got really angry and said the ONLY way to be sure a lump is benign is to biopsy it. When I showed him the letter from the clinic stating if I had a lump to see my GP, he screwed the letter up, flung it across the room with a sting of unrepeatable language and started yelling "IF?? what do they mean, IF! You DO have a lump - a **&^$$& great lump, and they tell you something like this???? What the hell were they thinking? Do they not have any common sense?"

The upshot is that he has referred me immediately to a breast surgeon. It makes me feel a bit better - I was beginning to feel like I was making a fuss over nothing. He reassured me that I did the right thing in seeing him about it,

You girls are soooo right to tell people to insist on a biopsy.

 Regards

Angela

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Oct 8, 2009 08:29AM chiquita wrote:

Angeladp....Great you are on the right path!!!!! God Bless You and if is benign GREAT.

Jaebo...go for some testes and if you have to insist on that DO IT!!!!

God is my best friend, he will be with me forever!!!!

Dx 9/15/2008, IDC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 2, 0/13 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+
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Oct 10, 2009 12:35AM angeladp wrote:

I saw the beast surgeon on Wednesday. He agrees with my GP that a biopsy is the only way to now for sure. I have an appointment for a core biopsy next Friday, IF i can get the mammogram films out of BreastScreen by then. If not I'll have to delay it until I can get them. All supposing I get them in time, I should know by 23 October, when I return to the surgeon. If the biopsy is inconclusive the surgeon said he wants to do a lumpectomy to be on the safe side. Hopefully it won't come to that though.

Angela

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Oct 10, 2009 05:46AM cakeisgreat wrote:

Angeladp...I like your GP.  Sounds like he has a brain!  And the surgeon sounds good too.  You cant play around with this stuff. Lots of times, the lumps are benign, but as they said, you never know until you look at the specimen under a microscope.

Keep us posted!

~Cake (is always great!)

Dx 6/9/2009, IDC, <1cm, Stage Ia, Grade 2, 0/6 nodes, ER+/PR-
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Oct 23, 2009 02:21AM angeladp wrote:

Saw the surgeon today. The biopsy shows just fatty tissue and breast tissue. However, after looking at the new ultrasound and feeling the lump again, my surgeon isn't satisfied. He says that if it were just breast and fatty tissue, it shouldn't feel any different from the rest of the breast, but the lump is hard and very obvious to the touch and has grown from barely a couple of cm 2 months ago to between 3 & 4cm now.  So, I'm scheduled for a lumpectomy on 26 November. The chances are it is benign, but frankly I'll just be glad to get rid of it and not have to think about it any more.

Angela

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Nov 26, 2009 10:24PM, edited Nov 26, 2009 10:24PM by angeladp

Lump was removed yesterday. The surgeon said before the surgery that he thought it was probably normal breast tissue growing in an abnormal way - huh??? Isn't that a definition of just about every breast condition there is? Anyway after the surgery he said he removed a "very obvious ball of tissue" and scheduled a follow up visit to "discuss the pathology" - I'm hoping there's nothing to discuss. I don't really see why I need a follow up if it's benign cos he's used disolvable stitches, so they don't need to be removed and the cut is only about 3 inches long - (the lump was about 2 inches - 5 cm -  by the time it was removed).

For anyone else undergoing this procedure - there's nothing to worry about. The surgery is a snack - in at 6am and out by midday, virtually no pain at all - just feels a tiny bit bruised, but there's no bruising to see. It's covered with a clear plastic dressing that comes off by itself in about 3 weeks and you can bathe normally with it still on.

Cheers

AngelaDP

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Nov 30, 2009 09:58AM cp418 wrote:

I prefer my lumps in a jar too.  Best wishes for a speedy recovery!  Smile
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Dec 7, 2009 12:57AM angeladp wrote:

Got the all clear today. It was a fibroadenoma and fibrocystic scarring that had formed together into an egg sized lump - fortunately benign and not likely to come back.

 Many thanks ladies for all your support - it was a bit of a long, scary (and expensive!) ride, but turned out okay in the end, thank goodness. Well worth the price for peace of mind.

Regards

AngelaDP

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Dec 7, 2009 09:32PM apple wrote:

money is not of consequence.

glad everything turned out for the best angel

peace and love, apple - ..... Mary Magdalen

Dx 4/10/2008, IDC, 5cm, Stage IV, Grade 3, 4/9 nodes, mets, ER+, HER2+