Breastfeeding trouble a sign of DCIS?
I wanted to bring over this discussion from the DCIS to Stage IV discussion because I think it is interesting on its own and important to me personally.
I was diagnosed with DCIS about 1 1/2 years after weaning my twins... the first troublesome mammogram (calcifications) was seen more like 6 months after weaning, but they took a wait and see approach. I stopped breastfeeding rather early on (4 months), and supplemented with formula throughout, due to not being able to extract enough milk. To me, I felt like I was making a LOT of milk, as my breasts became very large, heavy, and engorged. But my girls weren't getting enough despite lots of enthusiastic sucking (we weighed them frequently to be sure), and if I pumped I could hardly pump any milk from my right (left was fine). I found the whole situation to be frustrating and puzzling, and consulted with both a lactation consultant and a doctor. I tried a lot of things to help, including Reglan (which probably made the cancer spread more quickly, from what I've read).
To me, it's obvious that my breastfeeding was affected by DCIS. In the end I had 10 cm of DCIS, mostly solid... so I don't see how milk could have gotten through the ducts if a significant amount of that DCIS was present during breastfeeding. However, when I asked for help, nobody suggested cancer as a cause, and my oncologist hasn't heard about any links between breastfeeding trouble and DCIS.
(I also think my problems were easily dismissed as twin problems... they expected me to have trouble with two!)
In the other thread, several people mentioned similar stories. I've also done other searches where this has come up anecdotally. But I can't find any studies correlating breast feeding issues with DCIS...
Early diagnosis is so important, and I was fortunate that I got a mammogram when I did due to family history (I am in my 30s). With DCIS you often have no lump, and many women have no reason for screening (youth, no history). If this was a common symptom, I would think that doctors and lactation consultants would want to refer women to cancer screening if they were having production issues on one side, especially if they seemed engorged and stuck...
Any thoughts on this or info I haven't found?