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Interpreting my pathology report


Hi there,

I’m sad to be joining the community, but grateful for all the kindness and experience here.

I was diagnosed on Wednesday with bilateral breast cancer—DCIS in my right breast and DCIS, LCIS, and Invasive Lobular Carcinoma in my left breast.

I have an appointment with a surgeon on Monday, but it’s so hard to wait until then.

Can anybody shed any light (not medical advice, I know) on my pathology reports and what they might mean? How awful is it?

All the DCIS and LCIS is grade 2.

The info for the ILC is:

Size .7cm

ER Pos

PR Pos

HER-2 Negative

Proliferation 34% (this sounds bad)

Thanks for any insight!



  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,900

    Welcome, ngdb. We're so sorry you find yourself here, we know this is an overwhelming and difficult time. But we hope this community can be a source of support for you. We're all here for you and with you!

    Others in the community will surely chime in with their input and guidance, but we also wanted to point you in the direction of a resource that may be helpful in the meantime. This article on the main site has lots of info to help breakdown and understand your pathology report.

    Also, we want to let you know we offer very supportive, moderated Virtual Community Meetups. There are a number of different groups and times, so if you're interested, please check them out here: Virtual Community Meetups.


    The Mods

  • flowergirl1975
    flowergirl1975 Member Posts: 54

    @ngdb Im so sorry to hear this! It’s a totally sucky situation to be in. LCIS & DCIS is stage 0 which is very early BC. The earlier a BC is caught the better! I’m not a medical professional but .7cm does not seem big to me. The ER & PR and HER the doctors use to assess how your cancer is growing. It will help determine treatment.  Proliferation rate is a percent in which the number of cells in a tumor that are dividing. Looks like the mods suggested an article about understanding your path results, this would probably be helpful to read. Your surgeon is going to be able to answer a lot of questions for you Monday. I know it’s hard not to worry. Things will get better once you have these answers and an idea of a treatment plan! Hang in there!

  • lillyishere
    lillyishere Member Posts: 770

    I'm sorry you are joining our club. Here is the info I have learned in the last 4 years. DCIS, LCIS are Stage 0. Many women have it and they don't even know it. It can stay at this stage forever or develop into invasive. You shouldn't worry about Stage 0.

    ILC is invasive which makes it a real cancer you need to deal with. I had ILC myself and it tends to be different from IDC however, it is treated the same. The good news is that seems that you have a very small cancer of 7mm. Did you have MRI? If not, most likely your surgeon will recommend one. If there are no other suspicious areas, you may be recommended for lumpectomy+radiation and antihormone medications for 5-7 years. The good news is that ILC responds well to medications, also, it is a slow-growing cancer and most likely you won't be recommended chemo. The bad news is that is sneaky and many times it hides from scanning.

    I would suggest you write a list of questions before your doctor's appointment. Depending on your age, you may need to mention how aggressive you want to be on treatment. I was told that works better to take someone close to you, like your partner, a family member, or a close friend. It is better two sets of ears :). I did take my husband but didn't work well for me. I was cool-headed and he was very emotional. Even when I had to make decisions, he strongly disagreed with me and I had to convince him. I also would recommend getting a second opinion.

    Once you had the treatment plan ready, you will feel so much better.

  • ngdb
    ngdb Member Posts: 4

    Thank you for your comments. It helps so much to hear from others who have been on a similar path.

    my appointment with the surgeon is tomorrow morning and I’ve asked my husband to come with me as another set of ears—although part of me feels like I’d face it better on my own. But I think it’s best to have him with me.

    I have an MRI scheduled for Friday morning, so that is good. I get claustrophobic and panic-y, so my dr gave me a Xanax. I hope that does the trick, I’m dreading it. Which seems so silly when so many more awful things are looming.

    Off to start my list of questions for the surgeon. Thanks again!

  • ngdb
    ngdb Member Posts: 4

    Oh, and I’m 45 with two kids, 9 and 11. So I am ready to be aggressive with this!

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,900

    Best of luck on your appt tomorrow and your MRI on Friday, @ngdb! We hear you on the MRI and claustrophobia - some facilities will allow you to bring music or a meditation exercise that they'll play through speakers while you're in the machine, that can be hugely helpful for relaxation and anxiety during the scan!