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BI-RADS 5 - Needle Biopsy

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Texasmamabear
Texasmamabear Member Posts: 9
edited June 2021 in Not Diagnosed But Worried

Hello,

I’m new to this forum and glad to be here. I’m 46 years old and have recently received the news that I have a small mass in my right breast. After a screening mammogram I was advised to have a diagnostic mammogram and ultrasound, which I did on Wednesday. The Radiologist came in immediately and was very serious as he told me to get a needle biopsy as soon as possible.

I’m now navigating through the process of scheduling it and because I’m uninsured I am shopping around for pricing. I connected with the local health system’s Breast Navigator who is a God send.

I just learned yesterday when I got a call from my PCP that the radiologist’s report stated I am BI RADS 5. I was told that even if it is benign I will likely need to have it removed and need to see a surgeon. This news, once I understood what a five means (95% likely malignant), has been nerve wracking.

I am hoping to have my biopsy done next week so we can get to the next step. I’m praying for this to be benign but I also know the likelihood is slim.

I’m scared about the biopsy itself and wondering what that will be like. It sounds very painful. Needle+Breast.

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  • eviec1
    eviec1 Member Posts: 80
    edited May 2021
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    I just had my first biopsy this past week. It wasn't fun, but it was doable. They numb the area first which is very effective for some people so they feel little to no pain. In my case, unfortunately, it didn't work very well and the procedure was a bit painful, but not unbearably so (certainly not the worst pain I've ever felt). The first day was a little rough with pain and swelling (ice helps), the next day better, and by the third day almost back to normal. Even in my case where there was a bit of pain, it really wasn't that bad. Easier than a root canal, in my opinion (and I've had my share of those).

  • dani444
    dani444 Member Posts: 215
    edited May 2021
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    I am sorry you are going through this. Will your biopsy be ultrasound guided? They will numb you and it will most likely feel like a quick stinging. If you feel any discomfort speak up and they can put more numbing medicine in. I had a core needle biopsy with my first biopsy and after numbing the make a very small incision to introduce the needle that takes the sample. They may take multiple samples at that time. They will put a titanium marker in the spot where they took the biopsy and you will then have a mammogram with light compression to verify marker placement. I wore a sports bra so I could just tuck an ice pack in it. Tylenol helped the discomfort. You will have steri-strips on the incision site and they should give you instructions on how to care for them.

    I am so glad you have found a navigator to help you. Are you at a not for profit hospital? I know the hospital I work ( a catholic not for profit) for is very good about financial assistance and also helping to get resources for insurance possibilities. I as an employee there was able to qualify for assistance this last year and it was a huge help.

    Yes the BIRADS 5 is scary. I had the same result with my mammogram. Everyone just kept telling me to focus on the 5%🙄. All I really wanted was someone to say, wow that seems scary as hell, I am sorry. Ask how you will receive the results and when to expect them. If it is cancer you will face it and you will have an incredible resource in this community. Let us know how it goes.

  • edj3
    edj3 Member Posts: 1,579
    edited May 2021
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    I will echo that while not a lot of fun, the biopsy wasn't that bad (and I say that as a woman with a pretty solid needle phobia). My biopsy was ultrasound-guided core needle biopsy and the machine used was pretty loud (my radiologist warned me).

    I was very skeptical the dinky little ice packs would help at all afterwards but I was wrong, they were fantastic.

    And yes, it's scary. Of course it is!

    Oh one final thought--this process tends to be hurry up and wait, and it's almost certainly not going to make a difference in your outcome. I say almost only because someone, somewhere probably had a different experience, but truly a few weeks or so is to be expected. Some of us had to wait even longer, so just know that's pretty normal. Of course *we* want any cancer out ASAP, and that's normal too.

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 8,089
    edited May 2021
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    HI TexasMamaBear, and welcome to Breastcancer.org.

    We're so sorry you find yourself here worrying, but we're really glad you've joined us and decided to post. As you can already see, our Community is an amazing source of advice, information, encouragement, and support -- we're all here for you as you figure out what's going on!

    We agree -- it's a scary time right now, but try to remain hopeful. We're sending our good thoughts your way. And, if the news is not so good, we're right here for you all the way. Just please keep us posted!

    --The Mods

  • Texasmamabear
    Texasmamabear Member Posts: 9
    edited May 2021
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    Thank you ALL for the responses and messages of support. It’s been a rough weekend of worry but I have also taken time to rest and take lots of naps. Tomorrow I will get my biopsy scheduled and it will be ultrasound guided. I’m not sure why I feel so nervous about this procedure because I’m not normally a baby. I will make sure to remember everyone’s words and advice.

    I’m also finding that now that I know something is going on in my right breast I’m in tune to it and feel some discomfort. I don’t know why I didn’t feel anything before though. I imagine it might be because I was so busy with “life” that I just wasn’t paying attention to my body.

  • beesie.is.out-of-office
    beesie.is.out-of-office Member Posts: 1,435
    edited May 2021
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    I've had lots of biopsies - ultrasound guided is definitely the easiest and most comfortable - you just lie there while they do it. You can watch or close your eyes.

    It should be painless, other than the tiny prick for the needle when your breast is being numbed. If you feel anything after that, let them know. My only warning is about the sound. The needle sounds like a loud staple gun. Be prepared for that!

    Good luck, I sure you'll be fine.

  • Texasmamabear
    Texasmamabear Member Posts: 9
    edited May 2021
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    Beesie, thank you for telling me about the sounds. That seems like it would be startling if you didn’t know in advance. It looks like I’ll have to wait another week before I can get my biopsy so I’m going to try and stay busy in the meantime.

  • LivinLife
    LivinLife Member Posts: 301
    edited May 2021
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    Just want to send support! You will get through this... let us know when you're scheduled. And edj3 is correct on the ice afterwards... ice, ice, ice - it made such a difference each time I had a biopsy...

  • Jetcat
    Jetcat Member Posts: 18
    edited May 2021
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    Texasmamabear - I had an ultrasound guided biopsy this past Friday. The local anesthesia was no worse than getting blood drawn — just a pinch or two, then felt nothing. The radiologist told me what he was doing at each step and he actually let me hear the sound of the device ahead of time. It was less than 30 mins in total. I joked that my recent dentist visit was 100 times worse (deep gum cleaning). All the best for a very easy procedure for you

  • Texasmamabear
    Texasmamabear Member Posts: 9
    edited May 2021
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    I have a bit of an update. I am fortunate to have found a marketplace insurance plan that I signed up for yesterday. This will provide me with coverage starting June 1st. As hard as it is to delay my biopsy, I’ve got it scheduled for June 2nd. I feel some peaceof mind knowing that I have insurance and also that the biopsy is scheduled. In the meantime, I’m choosing to do things each day that bring me joy. First, I’m picking something for self care and second, I’m picking something that is FUN. Today I’m going to watch Despicable Me 2 with my daughter (fun) and going to the chiropractor for an adjustment (self care).

    Thank you all for your continued support and kind words.

  • edj3
    edj3 Member Posts: 1,579
    edited May 2021
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    Texasmamabear, that's really great news that you both got insurance and can get the biopsy the day after it starts. What a relief, right?

  • Texasmamabear
    Texasmamabear Member Posts: 9
    edited May 2021
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    edj3,It is a relief! I feel like I have a bit more control over the situation.

  • LivinLife
    LivinLife Member Posts: 301
    edited May 2021
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    So glad you're taking this steps! Good for you!

  • Texasmamabear
    Texasmamabear Member Posts: 9
    edited May 2021
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    Hello everyone. I’m checking in for a sanity check. I still have eleven more days of waiting for my biopsy. I’ve been staying busy and spending lots of time with my 12 year old daughter to keep myself in a positive mental place. I’m sleeping fine but have had some disturbing dreams. I’m noticing that if I stop and think about my future biopsy and surgery I start to get too far ahead of myself. The idea of a mastectomy has me scared.

    I guess I’m just looking for some support. I’ve had a hard time finding any stories of people who had BI RADS 5 with a benign diagnosis.

  • alicebastable
    alicebastable Member Posts: 1,945
    edited May 2021
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    Texasmamabear

    Okay, mine was Birads 5 and yes, it was cancer. My lumpectomy was same-day surgery and I was home by mid-afternoon. I've had dental work that wiped me out more. I was out having lunch with friends two days later (pre-Covid) and could have done it the day after surgery. Radiation was about 15 minutes (including changing my top before and after) out of my day every weekday for six weeks. I got a little pink on my collarbone and that was it. Some cancers, like mine, are just a minor nuisance with no drama or discomfort. Fingers crossed for benign, but if you are diagnosed with cancer, I hope yours is the same experience as mine was.

  • monarchandthemilkweed
    monarchandthemilkweed Member Posts: 155
    edited May 2021
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    hi, I know what a hard place your are in. Over my lifetime I’ve had two birads 4 biopsies. One turned out to be benign (excisional biopsy) and most recently, one turned out to be cancerous (core needle biopsy) I’ve never felt so much anxiety as I have waiting for biopsy results. It’s hard!

    Having been through an excisional biopsy which is like a lumpectomy and a now a mastectomy, a lumpectomy or excisional biopsy is pretty easy. I was home that day ans had little pain and I happened to be pregnant at the time. The worst part of the excisional biopsy was all the fasting but I was well into my second trimester.

    Anyhow, it’s all hard. We get it. But you will get through it. Be kind and gentle tonyoirs

  • dutchiegirl
    dutchiegirl Member Posts: 76
    edited May 2021
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    Texasmamabear, this is a really challenging time for you, I know. Keeping busy is definitely the best thing you can do. I’ve had 3 biopsies now, one benign and two that were cancer. The first two were u/s guided and the last was a punch biopsy. Both techniques were fine, no issues whatsoever though the ultrasound guided biopsy was easier. I was fine physically after both. When I was told I has cancer I opted for a double mastectomy because I really don’t want to deal with cancer in my other breast. The surgery and recovery were fairly easy and straightforward for me. I was at a support group two weeks after my surgery, feeling decent.

    Please keep us updated on your situation. The people here are amazing and this website really helped me get through everything. If you do need help or info, you will most definitely get it here. Best of luck to you

  • dogmomrunner
    dogmomrunner Member Posts: 492
    edited May 2021
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    Texasmamabear- hi. I was a Birads 5 and yes it turned out to be cancer. When I got my Birads number someone here said that those who got a benign result probably wouldn't be on this forum and posting. So what you see here is going to be those, like me, who ended up getting the cancer diagnosis.

    I won't lie to and say that my year of treatment was easy but it wasn't as bad as my imagination led me to believe. And two years out, I am doing well.

    I hope that the results are benign but if not - you will get through it. Having a plan once you are diagnosed can give you a sense of purpose. And everyone here is really supportive.

  • Janet_111
    Janet_111 Member Posts: 9
    edited May 2021
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    Hi DogMomRunner,

    I am really sorry for your results.,

    I hope and pray for your successful treatment .

  • Texasmamabear
    Texasmamabear Member Posts: 9
    edited June 2021
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    Hello everyone. Thank you ALL for your kind words and amazing support. I’ve been counting the days until my biopsy and it’s finally happening tomorrow. I’m nervous but ready. I’m also grateful for the support of people in my life who are praying for me.

    I’m not sure about other people but I’m finding it very hard to work through all of this stress. I guess staying busy helps and I’m very lucky to be self employed so I can take time off when I really need it.

    BI RADS 5... ugh it’s so daunting but maybe, just maybe I’ll be one of the lucky ones.