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Topic: first screening mammogram post surgery/radiation

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

Posted on: Sep 12, 2019 05:09PM

Hannah1962 wrote:

Hi everyone, I am six months out from the radiation treatment which followed my late December lumpectomy, and I am taking letrozole. Today I had a screening mammo, and it was disconcerting, and certainly scarier than I expected it would be. I'm sure there are many changes to the breast that show up on the mammogram images in the year after breast cancer surgery and radiation. I caught a glimpse of an image of my left breast (where the cancer was), and the first surprise was the number of what looked like pellets, which I think might be where the lumpectomy was. I've read online since then that markers are put in to help guide the radiation treatment. But there was also an area where it was bright white (elsewhere), and as a result I am worried. The person who did my mammo asked when I planned to see the doctor. I was not planning to see him, only to hear the result by phone.


I had two areas of LCIS on the margin of my ILC (so further surgery was not needed since LCIS is not considered cancer). I suspect I may have a lot of LCIS. Also, my breasts are a different texture yet still lumpy (and in a different way) since the radiation. I've been told the changes in texture post-surgery and radiation are totally normal. I guess I am just getting used to this new normal.


I am wondering what experiences other women have had with their first screening mammo after breast cancer treatment. Am I facing a higher likelihood of a callback because of the recent cancer dx, even though I completed the treatment? I'm really hoping between the radiation and the AI, I have some protection. I hope that brighter region I saw was nothing. Maybe it was just scar tissue, and perhaps the pellets were from a second biopsy done just before my lumpectomy.


Any comments or words of support would be much appreciated. Waiting is difficult!

Thank you!

Dx 12/7/2018, ILC, Left, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Sep 13, 2019 09:06PM jessie123 wrote:

Hannah --- my lumpectomy was in February and radiation ended May. Had my first Mammogram a couple of months ago --- they took a million pictures. The radiologist said this is "the baseline Mammogram" as my breasts are so different now with the scar tissue etc. They need it to determine current changes for future mammograms. So I wouldn't worry about this first one -- my radiologist wasn't worried about anything she saw.

I guess it's normal for our cancer breast to still be weird. Mine is lumpy and just heavy and weird feeling. And my areola is still brown. Seems like it should be well by now. If I give myself a breast examination now I'll be horrified because it's so different. I still haven't done that -- just scared -- not ready to go through treatment again - still tired from the shock of the whole thing.

I also had LCIS which is scary. Didn't expect that additional risk.

Are you going to have yearly MRI's because of the LCIS?



Dx 11/2018, LCIS/ILC, Left, 2cm, Stage IB, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/21/2019 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 4/14/2019 Whole-breast: Breast
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Sep 14, 2019 09:25PM Hannah1962 wrote:

Thanks for writing, Jessie. I was actually diagnosed in Ireland and then had my treatment in the USA, and now I am back in Ireland again. In the USA they were not going to do the mammo until December, but I would have seen the mo this month. Here they say I don't need the medical oncologist, just a good gp. In the USA, I would have had in December a mammo with a kind of contrast, according to my breast surgeon there, sort of a hybrid between mammo and MRI. Here last week I had what they described as a 3-D mammo, new and improved compared to what I had at the same place a year earlier. It better be improved because the year before my cancer did not show up on the mammo. I had a palpable lump though so it was biopsied. Your reply made me feel better. I have not been checking my breasts for lumps or anything weird, or at least, not until a couple days before the mammo last week. I think my breasts are still changing and recovering from the surgery and radiation. I will call in a few days if I don't hear from the doctor (about my mammo result), but will try not to worry.

Dx 12/7/2018, ILC, Left, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-
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Sep 16, 2019 09:43PM jessie123 wrote:

Hannah --- I also had the 3D mammogram ---- I'm interested in what the mammogram with contrast is. Can you tell me what hospital and city in the U.S. you were in so I can call them to find out what that is. I want my city to get one (-:

Dx 11/2018, LCIS/ILC, Left, 2cm, Stage IB, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/21/2019 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 4/14/2019 Whole-breast: Breast
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Oct 4, 2019 08:22PM Hannah1962 wrote:

Hi Jessie,

So sorry for responding late. I didn't see the flag on my screen that I had a reply.

It is Memorial Sloan Kettering in NYC.

I did finally get the all clear on my mammo here in Ireland, by the way, thank goodness (although who knows if I should trust it!) At least I am on the AIs and that has to be worth something.

Dx 12/7/2018, ILC, Left, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-

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