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Topic: No lump felt but dx with bc

Forum: Not Diagnosed But Worried —

Meet others worried about developing breast cancer for the first time. PLEASE DO NOT POST PICTURES OF YOUR SYMPTOMS. Comparing notes, symptoms, or characteristics is not helpful here, as only medical professionals can accurately evaluate and assess your individual situation.

Posted on: Jan 4, 2012 07:53PM

Justknw111 wrote:

I was wondering how often are women dx with bc but a lump is never felt?

Sherri
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Jan 4, 2012 07:59PM ALittleBitBritish wrote:

Me! Laughing

No lumps found..6th month followup mammogram found suspicious area...turned out to be LCIS & DCIS...no-one concerned about other breast.....but I later asked and low and behold  ILC in other breast with a positive node to boot! I had no lump found in that one either...dense tissue...

My motto..go with your gut instinct...and be your own advocate....otherwise I'd be sitting here with ILC still!!Yell 

- Feb 14 2011 - LCIS / DCIS right breast, March 2011 Left breast ILC one node +, 1/13, BLM, NSM, TE's, Oncotype score 9, No rads, No chemo, Tamox 5 years Hormonal Therapy 5/21/2011
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Jan 4, 2012 08:14PM YramAL wrote:

I never felt my lump. It was found on my annual mammogram when I was 49. I had been having annual mammograms since I was 40. Even when I knew exactly where my lump was, after my ultrasound and MRI, I couldn't feel it.

Mary 

Mary-Oncotype Score 11 Dx 12/7/2009, IDC, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jan 4, 2012 08:15PM CLC wrote:

I had no lump.  My dcis (stage 0 cancer) was tiny when they caught it with mammogram.  I think that there is lots and lots of bc cases without a lump.

Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you. ~Maori Proverb Surgery 10/29/2010 Lumpectomy: Left Dx 9/15/2011, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 1, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+ Surgery 10/7/2011 Mastectomy: Left
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Jan 4, 2012 08:15PM Janeybw wrote:

No palpable lump for me either.  Even the BS couldn't feel it when he knew where it was.

Jane. BMX with TEs on 5/24/11. Tamoxifen started 6/27/11. No chemo. Exchange 12/16/11. Dx 4/23/2011, IDC, 2cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jan 4, 2012 08:17PM patoo wrote:

Sherri, it's not uncommon at all.  Lots of us, yes, I never felt mine, only find out when we get called back because of something suspect on a mammogram.  Frustrating because we are always told to do the self exams and so many don't realize that it's not always caught that way. 

Know that we are all here for you.

"for we live by faith, not by sight" - 2 Corinthians 5:7 Dx 10/24/2008, ILC, 1cm, Stage IB, Grade 1, 0/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Hormonal Therapy 2/11/2009 Arimidex (anastrozole) Radiation Therapy 4/1/2009 Breast Surgery Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel
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Jan 4, 2012 08:18PM - edited Jan 4, 2012 08:19PM by dltnhm

I don't know how common it is ... but for me ... I did not feel a lump. I had a routine mammogram which revealed a suspicious area and a retest was ordered. The repeat mammogram led to an ultrasound the same morning. There was no question that there was a tumor. A breast mri with contrast revealed two small lesions. The size of my tumor will be based on whether these other spots are independent of the initial tumor or if it is one large tumor. The tumor size could almost double if they are part of the same tumor. That is crucial to know when rating and grading. My breast surgeon, my plastic surgeon, my oncologist and my radiologist have all shared that I would not have felt this lump ... as they were only feeling a slight fullnessand that was following a needle biopsy. And ... they knew where to 'look''. I am so thankful for the advances in screening. I have extremely dense breast tissue. I am in good shape, small frame and on the small size breastwise.  I hope that my experience will add to the numbers previous so that more women will have the opportunity to have breast mris.

Age 48 @ diag. Left SS NS UMX, Sent.Node Biopsy & part. Axillary (Node) Ex., & DIEP recon. on 1/10/12; AC DD Chemo began 2/22/12 ended 4/4/12; Taxol 12x: infusions began 4/26/12 ended 7/11/12! Rads x28: 8/06/12 - 9/13/12; Tamoxifen began 10/01/12 Dx 11/23/2011, IDC, 2cm, Stage IIIA, Grade 2, 7/19 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jan 4, 2012 08:31PM Janie-bug wrote:

I had my yearlly mammo, a US and both were fine, asked to do a MRI d/t my dense breast, family hx, (My sister and grandmother). The MRI showed 2 tumors with a barbel connection. I could not feel it even after a needle biopsy under US was done. The needle biopsy left a tiny hole over the spot where it was and I still could not find it. After surgery the path report said it was 1 tumor that had a indention in the middle giving it its barbel connection. The tumor measured 3.2 cm which in my mind was huge. My RO, or BS could not feel it either. I too and thankful for the advances in screening.

Janie Dx 11/11/2011, IDC, 3cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 0/10 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jan 4, 2012 09:30PM marie5890 wrote:

It's actually pretty common to be honest to be Dxed with BC and not have felt a lump. 

Jan '11 Biopsy Dx-ed a PASH tumor (rare, but benign tumor)....All I ask is for peace and serenity to the depths of my soul. Makes the rest of life more live-able.
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Jan 4, 2012 09:32PM - edited Jan 4, 2012 09:32PM by brightshadow

Same here -- no lump ever felt, even after lesion was found via mammography.

Dx 12/9/2011, DCIS, 3cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/4 nodes, ER-/PR-
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Jan 4, 2012 09:33PM Justknw111 wrote:

Thank you so much for sharing your experiences with me. I too have also been called back for further investigation of a spot found on my annual mammo. I have very dense breasts and I am unable to feel the nodule that was found. I go tomorrow for my diag mammo and us tomorrow.

Sherri

Sherri
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Jan 4, 2012 09:42PM cycle-path wrote:

Not only did *I* not feel a lump, but I was examined by SIX different doctors after my diagnosis (DCIS) and not a one of them found a lump.

I am an Uppity Woman. Don't like my posts? Put me on IGNORE. Dx 12/10/2010, DCIS, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+
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Jan 4, 2012 10:14PM Beesie wrote:

Sherri, if I understand correctly, you have a nodule that was seen on the mammogram - but it's not palpable, which means you can't feel it.  That's not unusual at all. I've had a number of cysts over the years - and in fact I have some now - that are quite small and deep inside my breast and therefore can't be felt.  But these nodules can be seen clearly on an ultrasound and an MRI and they have been identified as being normal, harmless cysts.  It's also possible to have a cancerous lump that is either very tiny, or is deep inside the breast, and therefore can't be felt. The fact that a lump isn't palpable is only an indication of the size and location of the lump, nothing more. 

This is very different from the situation that many of us have had where we were diagnosed with BC as a result of a non-palpable condition, such as calcifications.  Calcifcations are microscopic and they can never be felt, however when they show up on a mammogram (mine looked like sand had been sprinkled over the mammogram film), calcifications can be a sign of breast cancer. DCIS and early stage invasive BC is often discovered through calcifications so being diagnosed with BC but not having a breast lump is actually very common.  

You situation is not the same so please don't take all our answers as being a sign that you are likely to have BC because your lump can't be felt.  It can be seen and that's good news because this means that the diagnostic mammo and ultrasound may be able to provide enough information to identify what it might be.  

Good luck tomorrow.  

“No power so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.” Edmund Burke
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Jan 5, 2012 04:55PM Justknw111 wrote:

Had diag mammo done and was told that the result was a skin fold. ? Is this common? Should I have it investigated further you think?

Sherri

Sherri
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Jan 5, 2012 04:59PM CharB22 wrote:

No lump felt here either - not by me nor by my OB/GYN at my annual exam 2 weeks before my annual mammo. Even when I was getting my biopsy, my BS - who is a top guy at a big cancer center - he didn't feel it until he had the ultrasound contraption right on top of it. Then he said, "Ok...now I feel it" It was very deep which is why no one felt it. I was told I was very lucky to have a good mammo tech the 1st time around because I have TN (the aggressive stuff) and had I waited another year before it was spotted, it would have surely gone into my lymph nodes.

Lumpectomy - 12/9/11, 4 AC, 4 Taxol; Chemo done - 4/26/12 Dx 12/1/2011, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 12/9/2011 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel Chemotherapy 1/6/2012 AC
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Jan 5, 2012 05:10PM CharB22 wrote:

Janie-bug - I had that same barbel configuration. My BS thought it was 2 separate tumors but when he was doing the lumpectomy, he found it was 1. I thought I was an "original". LOL
Lumpectomy - 12/9/11, 4 AC, 4 Taxol; Chemo done - 4/26/12 Dx 12/1/2011, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/2 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 12/9/2011 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Right, Sentinel Chemotherapy 1/6/2012 AC
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Jan 5, 2012 08:34PM Justknw111 wrote:

Did they first think it was a skin fold? I do not feel comfortable with the diagnosis...doesn't make sense.
Ugggh

Sherri
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Jan 5, 2012 08:40PM Beesie wrote:

Sherri, yes, it's possible that it was just a skin fold.  The way that your breast is squeezed in the mammogram machine, if a bit of skin or breast tissue is bunched together, it can look like a mass or a nodule when in fact it's nothing at all.  Happens a lot. 

The fact is that a "nodule" showed up on your mammo.  Now you've had a diagnostic mammo, which is exactly the same technology and therefore will "see" exactly the same things - except that this is a close-up / magnified look at the area of concern.  So if the mammo saw something there last time and it's still there, the diagnostic mammo will certainly see it.  From what you are saying, I'm guessing that nothing at all showed up on your diagnostic mammo.  And nothing showed up on your ultrasound.  And that's the reason why the first step after something shows up on a mammo is to do a diagnostic mammo and ultrasound.  75% of the time, whatever was seen on the original mammo turns out to be nothing at all. 

Seems to me that you got that "all clear", which is great news.  

“No power so effectually robs the mind of all its powers of acting and reasoning as fear.” Edmund Burke
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Jan 5, 2012 08:43PM bcincolorado wrote:

I had no lump.  From what I was told it had to do with dense tissues, or as I call them now, stupid boobs!

Dx 8/2009, IDC, Left, 5cm, Stage IIA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 1/7/2010 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Left Hormonal Therapy 1/15/2010 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Hormonal Therapy 1/30/2016 Femara (letrozole)
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Jan 5, 2012 11:07PM alexandria58 wrote:

No lump, just tiny amount of calcifications on Mamogram.  Had multifocal DCIS 7 cm.

Alex

Dx 2/22/2011, DCIS, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER+/PR+
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Jan 5, 2012 11:59PM ProudMom_Wife wrote:

I had two tumors. One DCIS and the other IDC.  Neither could be felt by anyone through a physical exam even after they were found through mammogram and ultra sound.  My breast was just so lumpy and dense.  

Dx 10/1/2010, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IIA, Grade 2, 2/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 11/17/2010 Mastectomy: Left; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Chemotherapy 1/5/2011 AC + T (Taxol) Surgery 4/25/2011 Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Radiation Therapy 5/16/2011 Hormonal Therapy 7/1/2011 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone)
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Jan 6, 2012 12:13AM Shrek4 wrote:

ILC is generally non-palpable, and also may not show on mammograms either or US - only MRI can see it.

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Jan 6, 2012 07:21AM - edited Jan 6, 2012 07:21AM by marlenet

No lump felt for me or my surgeon. 

Dx 11/14/2008, IDC, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 2, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 12/3/2008 Lumpectomy: Right Chemotherapy 1/12/2009 Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide), Taxotere (docetaxel) Hormonal Therapy 3/29/2009 Radiation Therapy 3/31/2009 Breast
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Jan 7, 2012 09:54PM Bogie wrote:

I never felt a lump nor did my breast surgeon. Mammo showed microcacifications, nothing picked up 1.5 cm malignant tumor except for pathology results after bilateral masectomy.

Bogie Dx 8/1/2011, IDC, 1cm, Stage I, Grade 3, 0/5 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 12/20/2011 Lymph node removal: Right, Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left, Right Hormonal Therapy 3/31/2012 Aromasin (exemestane)
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Jan 7, 2012 10:42PM crystalphm wrote:

No lump found, in fact, I got "all is well" results from my mammogram the same day I was told I had breast cancer....what a terrible experience. I saw a doctor because I had a slight discharge...he tested the discharge and we had a diagnosis....the mammogram missed the cancer for quite a few years.

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Jan 7, 2012 10:56PM mooserella wrote:

My tumor was found by mammogram in November.  I couldn't feel any lump, and they couldn't see it with ultrasound, but they did a stereotactic core biopsy, and sure as anything there it was, IDC, about 6 mm.  Lumpectomy on 12/21 and two sentinel nodes taken, both clean, and clean margins on the lump.  I am waiting to hear about oncotyping of tissue, but we are hoping I get the all clear, then it's radiation and Arimidex for 5 years (I'm post menopausal, had endometrial cancer three years ago so they took all my plumbing).  I never expected lightning to strike twice, but now I expect anything.

V Dx 12/9/2011, IDC, <1cm, Stage I, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2-
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Jun 30, 2013 03:53PM - edited Jun 30, 2013 04:04PM by Glt3mom

Not sure what's going on with my breast. I am 30 years old, wife and mother to three of the Sweetest little boys. I had major surgery in February then nine days later ended up in the ER with multiple blood clots in my right lung :( I was in the hospital for three days on a heparin drip then switched to Lovenox injections twice a day and Coumadin. I ended up back in the hospital just five days after being released for un controlled bleeding and had another surgery. I had to get a unit of plasma as my blood was too thin then later that evening I received two units of packed red Platelets. This is when the Pulmonary specialist came in and told me that the CT that found my blood clots also found a lump above my right breast and I need a biopsy ASAP. :( The Breast surgeon came in and did her exam then had ultrasound come up right after she left. The ultrasound showed the lump as well and the radiologist said it needs to be watched for 6 months and do a follow up ultrasound and breast exam. So I go back in September to see if it has changed. I ended up back in the hospital just two days after being released the last time due to uncontrolled bleeding again. I ended up back in the OR for the third time. Then my Dr's agreed that an IVC filter would be good for me so I had a procedure done in the Cath lab and was released after spending six mor days in the hospital. Happy that I have been home for three months now! Is this normal???

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Jun 30, 2013 04:10PM MelissaDallas wrote:

Absolutely and very, very common. When they give you a six month recheck like this they believe the likelihood that it is anything to worry about is less than 2%. Just make sure you do your follow-up. They are just watching to make sure it doesn't change. This is safe-even if it were to be an early cancer most breast cancers grow very slowly & six months would make little difference.

The problem with things like CTs are you usually learn you have some little idiosyncrocies that are no big deal and you would have never known about and that would never have caused any problems.

I too had a PE when I was sick. Now I know I have a kidney cyst, hemangioma on my spine and arthritic cysts in my shoulder. None of them are anything to worry about.

LCIS, extensive sclerosing adenosis, TAH/BSO & partial omentectomy for mucinous borderline ovarian tumor.
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Jun 30, 2013 04:45PM - edited Jun 30, 2013 04:53PM by Glt3mom

Thank You for replying! I know it's probably nothing to worry about as many women get cysts that are benign. A couple months before my major surgery ( total hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo - oopherectomy ) I went to my PCP because my breasts had grown a full cup size and hurt so bad. My right breast was warm and itched bad too. He just told me that this was normal. It happened several times. Not sure if it is anything to worry about.

I am Sorry that you are going through so much.

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Jun 30, 2013 10:28PM MelissaDallas wrote:

I'm fine now. Sounds like you have really been through the wringer though. I'll bet you were really frightened.

I had to do Lovenox for six months. Man, did I ever get sick of that. Not as bad as I thought it would be, but after a while you run out of unbruised spots in the areas that are less sensitive. I hated it when I bled from the injection too. I was grateful I didn't have to do coumadin because of the monitoring. There for a while I felt like I spent half my time at the clinics.

LCIS, extensive sclerosing adenosis, TAH/BSO & partial omentectomy for mucinous borderline ovarian tumor.
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Jun 30, 2013 11:20PM Glt3mom wrote:

I'm definitely ready for all of this to be behind me but my Dr's can't get me to a therapeutic level. I'm taking 10mg Coumadin five days a week and 7.5mg two days a week and my INR dropped from 3.5 to 1.9 in two weeks then dropped again from 1.9 to 1.36 in the last two weeks. I have a list of foods I can't have due to being high in Vitamin K.

I'm Sorry you had to do the Lovenox injections. They are definitely no Fun. I haven't bruised much because my blood is still too thick :(

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