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New here....Bi-rad 5 :-(

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annlat
annlat Member Posts: 25
edited January 2021 in Waiting for Test Results

Hi. I had a mammogram and ultrasound showing a small mass in my left breast. I have been reading online and trying to prepare for the worst since the report said Bi-rad 5. I had my biopsy on Tues, waiting to hear back. I have only told a couple of people because I don't want to worry anyone. So far, I haven't really been upset, just worried and I am starting to feel sad. I live alone with my dog and my family is in another state. I explained to my sister that I probably have cancer. She will come and help me with whatever, but I hate asking anyone for help. It makes me sad to see so many people here on this page. I am a retired Rad Tech, but I worked in the Cath Lab and I don't have any experience with breast cancer. So all of this is new for me. I did speak to a cousin that had breast cancer and talked about her treatments, etc. and I did feel a little better after getting some first hand information. Sigh....I feel like I'm rambling. Maybe it's the wine? :-) I need to relax and get my mind off of this for a little while. I pray for all of you! And I'm glad this site is here.

Comments

  • beesie.is.out-of-office
    beesie.is.out-of-office Member Posts: 1,435
    edited January 2021
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    Sorry you've had to find us.

    Unfortunately with a BI-RADs 5, it is likely that your biopsy will find cancer. But I've been here a long time, and I have seen quite a number BI-RADs 5s come back benign - there are some benign conditions (radial scars, for example) that mimic breast cancer on imaging. So you should prepare to hear that you have breast cancer, but you can still hope for the best.

    One thing to know is that when a BI-RADs 5 core needle biopsy comes back benign, odds are that an excisional (surgical) biopsy would be recommended, because the results would be considered discordant. In most of these cases the final result confirms the biopsy, but it means that whatever happens, you are almost certainly facing a least a small surgery.

    Let us know when you get your results. Whatever it is, there's lots of information and support here.


  • alicebastable
    alicebastable Member Posts: 1,939
    edited January 2021
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    I had a Birads 5, and yes, it was cancer. I had a lumpectomy and was home by mid-afternoon. Had it on a Wednesday and went out to lunch with friends Friday. I did have to have a re-excision about a month later to get cleaner margins (delay was due to non-breast cancer issues) and I had 33 radiation sessions. Re-excision took about an hour total and I was home for lunch. Radiation took about 10-15 minutes total out of each day, including wait time. I also went to fun concerts (not so doable this year), went on a lot of day trips, and even some short vacations before, between, and after tests, scans, and surgeries. Guess what I remember the most? The fun stuff! Except for the frustration of finding a bra that fits both sides oO🥴, there is absolutely nothing sad about me. Sure, a lot of women go through more, with chemo and mastectomies, but a lot have the exact experience I did. And a lot of those women aren't on forums like this because their cancer was a one and done thing and they got on with their lives. I'm retired and bored so I stick around 🥱. Good luck!

  • rah2464
    rah2464 Member Posts: 1,192
    edited January 2021
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    Annlat sorry you are having to go through this time of waiting for an answer. I am thankful you have found this site. The women and men who respond will be your lifeline if you need one. You will not be alone during this time just reach out. To Alice's point, we all approach the specter of cancer differently, and there certainly is no right or wrong feeling about it. It just is your experience. Please keep us updated on your test results. Sending you wishes for a benign result

  • dogmomrunner
    dogmomrunner Member Posts: 492
    edited January 2021
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    Hi annlat- I was a birads 5. My stats below. Almost two years out from diagnosis. It's probably cancer, go ahead and admit that possibility. Take a deep breath and don't panic. There's a lot of wonderful people here with good advice. Once you get all the information (diagnosis) and a plan, you will feel better. You have a lot of people here that have gone through it. You are not alone

  • LivinLife
    LivinLife Member Posts: 301
    edited January 2021
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    Just want to welcome you! You've received good feedback so I really can't add anything to that. The waiting is hard - do what you can to engage in relaxing and enjoying activities as distractions. Please let us know what you find out.... There indeed is a lot of support here!

  • annlat
    annlat Member Posts: 25
    edited January 2021
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    Thank you all for the posts! I needed to hear something other than the voice in my head predicting the worst. My path report is positive for IDC. It is 1cm, they didn't give me a grade or stage yet. The surgeon's office will call to set up my appt. He comes very highly recommended by friends as well as other healthcare workers. It's weird, but I almost feel grateful to have an answer and getting this started. I'm hoping a lumpectomy will take care of it, but I will see when I talk to the surgeon.

    Now I am breathing again.....AliceBastable, you post made me smile because you sound like me with the concerts and day trips and fun stuff.

    Thank you everyone for being so kind and supportive. And I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

  • beesie.is.out-of-office
    beesie.is.out-of-office Member Posts: 1,435
    edited January 2021
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    Sorry you got the cancer diagnosis, even though it was not unexpected.

    1cm is small, so that's good. What you need to find out from the biopsy are the grade, and most importantly as it relates to your treatment plan, the ER, PR and HER2 status. You likely won't find out the stage until after surgery, when the final size of the tumor is known (imaging isn't always accurate) and your lymph nodes have been checked. You might get a preliminary clinical stage based the imaging and biopsy results but usually that's only provided to patients who will be getting chemo prior to surgery. Neoadjuvant chemo is done for patients who either have very large tumors, or who are triple negative (ER-/PR-/HER2-) or HER2+ and have a 2cm or larger tumor. So with a 1cm tumor, that's not likely in your case. And with a 1cm tumor, if your cancer is ER+ and HER2- (which is the most common subtype), chemo is not likely to be required, although positive nodes or a high Oncotype score could change that.

    If you don't understand some of what I wrote, trust me, you will understand it all very quickly! It's a whole new world but it becomes familiar very fast.

    Either now or when you get the rest of the biopsy pathology, you'll want to head over to the Just Diagnosed forum. See you there!

  • OnTarget
    OnTarget Member Posts: 124
    edited January 2021
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    I'm sorry for your diagnosis! The waiting is the absolute worst part!!

    I did a BMX, chemo, and I had an infection in an implant. That all sounds awful, but really it wasn't too bad. I mostly just lived my normal life once the waiting (and craycray research I felt driven to do) was over.

    I can imagine it is hard to ask for help, but I'd suggest at the very least you find a few people to vent to. That way you can spread around any repetitive obsessing you may feel inclined to do. Since my diagnosis I've been a support person for 2 friends with BC, and I know they appreciated being able to talk.

    Hopefully your surgery will be easy peasey!

    We're all here for you!

  • LivinLife
    LivinLife Member Posts: 301
    edited January 2021
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    Yes, unfortunately it may have been more of a surprise had you not been diagnosed with cancer or DCIS given BIRADS 5 so.... I hope you hear from the surgeon's office before long... Even if these aren't emergencies I think they do the best they can to get people in as timely as feasible.... that can also vary.... Beesie is sooo right (and I had to chuckle a little) - many of these words, terms, etc. initially seem sooooo "what....????" and then before long at all you know the language.... It's amazing how little time that takes....I like the "spread around" suggesting too in finding 2-3 trusted others you already know whom you can talk to - helps so much! Obviously there is a lot of support here too so can help round things out. Please let us know how things go as steps unfold for you. Do what you can to focus on good self-care in various ways too... can be and feel more difficult at times like this while it's also even more important....

  • alicebastable
    alicebastable Member Posts: 1,939
    edited January 2021
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    And if you're like me and don't have anyone in real life to vent to - well, there's always us! Poke around on the list of topics and you'll find several for venting or commiserating or whatever you need. But for the nuts and bolts of your particular medical adventure, it's best to stick with this thread, at least until you have more information on your specific diagnosis.

  • Nanavmac
    Nanavmac Member Posts: 2
    edited January 2021
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    I am having a core guide biopsy in 2 days and am scared to death. They categorized my ultrasound as a Birad 5. Can anyone tell me how bad the biopsy hurts and has anyone been categorized as a Birad 5 and the results were benign? So muh is running thru my head.

  • melissadallas
    melissadallas Member Posts: 929
    edited January 2021
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    Hi Nanavmac. Sorry you find yourself here.

    Does the biopsy hurt? Mine didn’t. Do you know if it will be ultrasound guided or stereotactic (mammogram guided)? Ultrasound guided ones are quick and easy. Stereotactic take a little longer.

    Yes, there are a handful of people with Birads 5s who are not diagnosed, usually with something like radial scar or sclerosing adenosis, which can mimic cancer on imaging, but the reality is that 95% of Birads 5s are diagnosed with cancer.

    Could I suggest you start your own thread in the “Not Diagnosed” forum? You can post all your questions and your biopsy results there.

    Just click on the red “Start a New” button at the top of the page.

    https://community.breastcancer.org/forum/83


  • minustwo
    minustwo Member Posts: 13,077
    edited January 2021
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    Or in any case, read all the posting on this thread - which would answer many of your questions. Sorry if I sound snarky. I'm having a bad night.

  • moth
    moth Member Posts: 3,293
    edited January 2021
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    Nanavmac, the biopsy should not hurt at all. They will put in freezing - so a little bee sting at the beginning like dental freezing. After that, you should feel nothing really other than occasional pressure. If you feel pain, just tell them right away and they will put more freezing in. The procedure is relatively quick and they usually just need a bandaid on it after. They gave me an icepack to put in my bra. I went grocery shopping after mine. It is usually a very minor procedure.

    BIRADS 5 does mean the likelihood of malignancy is 95% or greater. It is possible to have it come back benign because of course the flip side of that is that up to 5% will turn out to be nothing to worry about. Hang in there. This waiting part is very stressful so try to distract yourself.

  • OnTarget
    OnTarget Member Posts: 124
    edited January 2021
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    I had 3 biopsies and one of them hurt quite a bit, the others were fine. Even the one that hurt is bearable, just not enjoyable.


  • Nanavmac
    Nanavmac Member Posts: 2
    edited January 2021
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    Thank you all for your wisdom and kind words. The waiting is the hardest part. I will keep everyone updated. I have faith!

  • salamandra
    salamandra Member Posts: 736
    edited January 2021
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    Hi Nanavmac,

    I didn't find my biopsy especially painful or unpleasant. I would've ridden my bike home had I not been counseled against it.

    I was also birads 5 (though I didn't know it at the time), and my biopsy came back malignant.

    What I wish I had known is that malignant doesn't mean stage 4 at death's door. My primary experience with cancer was watching my mother, whose breast cancer wasn't discovered until she was seriously symptomatic and really was, in some ways, at death's door.

    My malignant meant that I had to go through some treatment (some easier than others) and now have pretty good odds of a normal lifespan. In fact, that is the case for many malignant diagnoses these days, especially those initially discovered through routine screening (mine was discovered through a manual exam at my gynecologist).

    Good luck and hang in there! Heart