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Topic: second mammogram

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

Posted on: Feb 12, 2008 09:26PM

mungopark wrote:

My mother was told by her doctor to come back for a second mammogram and ultrasound because they saw "variations" from her last years' films, but no lumps. She's 74 and really scared. I tried to tell her that this is pretty common - in fact I've had to do it myself, and my doctor said not to panic next time and to tell all my friends not to be too worried about a follow up mammogram/ultrasound. Has this happened to a lot of you all? Were the results often negative? Thank you for any words of encouragement. I know that early diagnosis is key, but I'm so scared for my mom.

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Feb 12, 2008 10:23PM Beesie wrote:

Getting a call back for additional testing after a mammogram is very very common. 

As for the results, this board might not be the best place to ask if this has happened a lot and if the results were often negative, since this is a breast cancer board and most of us who hang out here at some point had a call-back that did result in a diagnosis of breast cancer.  Undecided

What I can tell you is that in most cases, the additional mammogram and ultrasound are all that's necessary and that's the end of the process.  Whatever was unclear on the original films is now clear and there are no further concerns.  In a minority of cases, the additional mammogram and ultrasound won't be sufficient and the next step may be an MRI or a biopsy.  Even when it gets to the biopsy stage, 80% of biopsies end up being benign.  So in the vast majority of cases, the end result of a call-back is not a diagnosis of cancer.

I can also tell that over the past 30 years or so, I've had more call-backs that I can count.  And I've had 6 biopsies.  Except for one time 2 years ago when I was diagnosed with early stage breast cancer, all my other call-backs and biopsies were benign.

Good luck to your mother.  Hopefully the next set of films will clear everything up and will all that's necessary for her.

Dx 9/15/05, DCIS-MI, 6cm+ Gr3 DCIS w/IDC microinvasion, Stage I, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR- “No power so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.” Edmund Burke

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Feb 12, 2008 11:12PM mungopark wrote:

Thank you very much for your comments.  I understand what you mean about this forum - I was just looking for some input and this site seemed really welcoming. Best wishes to you!

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Feb 12, 2008 11:19PM, edited Feb 12, 2008 11:20PM by Beesie

I hope that you are able to ease your mother's mind.  It is scary to get a call-back, but it really is a pretty normal part of the process.  And please continue to come here to ask any questions you have - this site is really friendly and it's a great resource.  Hopefully your mother won't need a biopsy but if she does, there are lots of women here who can explain the process and tell her (or you, for her) what she'll need to do.

I simply worry sometimes that women who come here may end up even more frightened because most of us have our cancer stories, so reading our posts, it often seems as though every suspicious mammogram turns out to be cancer.  And of course, that's not the case at all.  So as long as you keep in mind that we're the minority, you will find lots of information and support here. 

Dx 9/15/05, DCIS-MI, 6cm+ Gr3 DCIS w/IDC microinvasion, Stage I, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR- “No power so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.” Edmund Burke

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Feb 13, 2008 07:15AM roseg wrote:

Your Mom is lucky to have you there to be a calm voice.

Callbacks can be very nerve wracking, but most of the time it's not anything. 

Rose

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Feb 13, 2008 09:09AM lvtwoqlt wrote:

I have had numerious call backs for just a closer look and a couple of them resulted in biopsies that were b-9. Beesie gave you good advice to not worry about the call back and even if they do need to do a biopsy, 80% of the time they are b-9.

Sheila

Women are like tea bags, we don't know how strong we are until we were thrown into hot water. Eleanore Roosevelt Diagnosed ADH Feb 2005, ADH Sept 2006

Dx 4/27/2007, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/7 nodesSurgery 02/12/2005 Lumpectomy (Left)Surgery 09/10/2006 Lumpectomy (Right)Hormonal Therapy 10/12/2006 TamoxifenSurgery 06/01/2007 Mastectomy (Both)