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Topic: Nodes

Forum: ILC (Invasive Lobular Carcinoma) — Just diagnosed, in treatment, or finished treatment for ILC.

Posted on: Feb 21, 2008 05:55PM

needtotalk wrote:

Hi friends.  I am going in for surgery (lumpectomy) next Tuesday, the 26th.  My lump is 1.2 cm.  The surgeon cannot feel any nodes, nor did they see any on the MRI.  They will be doing a Sentinel Biopsy - but I am still so worried that they will find positive nodes.  I hear on this forum of women in my same situation that end up finding positive nodes.  Does anyone know how common this is after a clear MRI.  Also, if they do find positive nodes, can your prognosis still be considered good?  Thanks so much!!

Dx 1/16/2008, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Feb 21, 2008 06:41PM - edited Feb 21, 2008 06:42PM by shrink

I had many positive nodes after a clear MRI.  We were all unpleasantly surprised.  However, the scan after surgery showed no metastisis.  There are lots of women on this board going strong even with positive nodes.  I hope you won't have any.  Lots of luck on Tuesday.

Dx 5/23/2007, IBC, 6cm+, Stage IIIC, Grade 3, 21/21 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Feb 21, 2008 06:51PM LindaLou53 wrote:


I can certainly understand the worry about positive nodes. It is true that negative nodes are a better prognosis than positive nodes, but successful and complete treatment is still certainly possible with positive nodes. Many women are living long, cancerfree lives after having nodal positive cancers. There is a distinction between what is called "micromets" to nodes and fully involved nodes which particularly have larger than 2mm cancer growth. Of course the fewer nodes positive the better, but there are still numerous stories of women who had multiple positive nodes and are still around to tell about it.

I myself had all 23 nodes positive for Lobular cancer and I passed my 2 year mark last December and am totally NED based on my CT scan last month. My first cancer which was ductal in 2000 had micromets to 2 nodes but the prophylactic mastectomy I had done in 2005 showed absolutely no signs of that cancer left anywhere.

I am sure there will be many other women posting here who can tell you positive nodes are not an automatic death sentence. It is great that your tumor is small and no nodes showing up on MRI. The likelihood is that your nodes will either be negative or with very minimal involvement which still has a very good outcome.

Hang in there!

Life is not measured by how many breaths we take...but by the moments that take our breath away! ...I am a 14/9 yr survivor of 2 Primary BCs, 23/23 Positive Nodes (Zometa x 5 years) Started Paloma-3 Clinical Trial 4-14-14 Dx 7/14/2000, IDC, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 2/7 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 8/11/2000 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel Chemotherapy 8/30/2000 AC + T (Taxol) Radiation Therapy 2/26/2001 Breast, Lymph nodes Hormonal Therapy 5/10/2001 Dx 11/21/2005, ILC, 5cm, Stage IIIC, Grade 1, 23/23 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 12/5/2005 Lymph node removal: Left, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right Chemotherapy 12/23/2005 Taxotere (docetaxel), Xeloda (capecitabine) Hormonal Therapy 4/7/2006 Aromasin (exemestane) Radiation Therapy 4/7/2006 Breast, Lymph nodes Dx 3/21/2014, ILC, Stage IV, mets, ER+/PR-, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 4/14/2014 Faslodex (fulvestrant)
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Feb 21, 2008 11:12PM hollybee wrote:

Hi, can I also chime in?  My mother-in-law had breast cancer over 10 years ago and had lumpectomy and full axillary dissection and almost all of her lymph nodes were "dirty".  She refused chemo, so she only had radiation and 5 yr of tamoxifen.  I can tell you she is still doing great, no recurrence and no problems since her original diagnosis.  So I'd agree with Linda Lou's assessment (and congratulations for 2 years, LL!). 

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Feb 23, 2008 04:58PM LizM wrote:

I thought I was stage 1 before my bi-lateral over 2 years ago (ultrasound showed 1.4 cm tumor).  I also had an ultrasound of my auxilla before surgery which looked clear.  However, I ended up with a 2 cm tumor and 1 positive node.  I was devastated at the time and thought for sure I was doomed.  I had chemo, rads and am now on Femara and so far so good.  While your prognosis is better with negative nodes, you can still have positive nodes and do just fine.  My bc was considered stage II and still considered early stage with a fairly good prognosis.  Hang in there.

Dx 9/19/2005, IDC, 2cm, Stage II, Grade 1, 1/8 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Feb 23, 2008 07:13PM dalycity wrote:

Hi, needtotalk: My lump was also 1.2 cm.  Doc could not tell me anything about the nodes till he did the sentinel bioposy; took out 3 nodes and all were negative. I was a Stage 1c.  I had lumpectomy, radiation and now on Arimidex for 1 year already (I am post-meno). I understand that even with positive nodes, ladies still do well because one of the jobs of the nodes is to catch the cancer cells before it spreads. The radiation is supposed to kill whatever micro-evasion remains.  Best wishes to you.

dalycity Dx 11/30/2006, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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May 25, 2008 03:21PM June68 wrote:


I was so happy to read your post. I just did double mastectomy& aux. lymph disection a week and a half ago. Initial test showed I had 6 lymphs, but biopsy came back that 17/17 were positive and I freaked out, this was after I did 8 rounds of chemo. Did you do you chemo before or after and if you don't mind sharing what did you have? I did 4 rounds Cytoxan, 1 round Taxotere & 3 rounds Taxol.

Take care


"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us ".- Ralph Waldo Emerson Dx 12/14/2007, ILC, 5cm, Stage IV, 17/17 nodes, mets, ER+/PR+, HER2-

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