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Topic: Can somebody please help me to understand what is going on?

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: Mar 20, 2017 03:43PM

buff88 wrote:

I'm a 19 y/o female. About 3 weeks ago I noticed a lump in my breast without any pain. A week later it started hurting really badly, and I suspected it was a cyst (my mother gets them and it was around the time of my period). Then the pain became constant and pretty bad, so I went to the ER to get it drained. (There is redness on my breast, and it is slightly larger than the unaffected breast, along with pain in the breast and nipple). Instead while I was there I got an ultrasound. It showed a rather large mass with spots of color around it (I'm sorry, I'm not well phrased in medical terminology). The doctors told me that I have a complicated mass with cystic components, and that I should get it biopsied right away. The place they referred me to have been slow to call me back (I've made several calls and the staff was rather unhelpful). The only person in my family to have breast cancer was my great grandmother, and given my young age I'm assuming that it is benign... however I overheard a doctor saying that I would need surgery, and the technicians and my doctor all became suspiciously kind after running tests. They told me they couldn't answer questions until they knew exactly what the mass was (3.1 x 2.6 x 2.0 cm, immobile, in scubareolar region). My discharge papers say that "there is no internal vascularity seen within the hypo echoic material located within the mass." I think my doctors are being brief because they don't want to instill panic and/or be susceptible to a lawsuit. But I'm a planner. I do best when I can attempt to understand what is happening rather than sit in the dark. Can anyone please help me understand what my chances of this being malignant are, my chances of recovery if so, and even to just explain what my doctors are seeing in my ultrasound? Also, what kind of biopsy should I expect to receive? It has been a very long weekend waiting for the clinic to open. I haven't had many people to talk to about it, because I don't want to panic my loved ones until I know whats happening. So besides my doctor, I'm alone here. Even the smallest information or advice will give me peace of mind. Thank you.

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Mar 20, 2017 04:54PM Meow13 wrote:

Statistically 80% of biopsies are benign. No internal vascularity seen is encouraging.

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Mar 20, 2017 06:07PM djmammo wrote:


If you can get a copy of the report that would be helpful. The description you gave is not all that specific.

Possibilities include 1) abscess, 2) complicated cyst with lots of debris, or 3) a tumor. Given your age I would put my $2.00 on 1 or 2. If it is extremely tender and hot with reddened skin, that would favor an abscess.

No matter which of the above, this needs follow up with final diagnosis coming in the form of a needle being placed in it at Ultrasound with material to be sent to pathology thereafter.

Board Certified Diagnostic Radiologist specializing in Breast Imaging helping members understand their health care provider's reports and recommendations.
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Mar 20, 2017 06:44PM MTwoman wrote:


djmammo is wise in the ways of all things radiological, so I'd listen to him. If it helps at all, here are some statistics for you from the Oxford Annals of Oncology:

"According to the statistics from American Cancer Society, 95% of new cases and 97% of breast cancer mortality occurred in women aged 40 and older during 2000–2004; in the same period, women aged 20–24 years had the lowest breast cancer incidence rate, 1.4 cases per 100 000 women"

so just given your young age, you have a very slim chance of your mass being malignant. To answer your second question " my chances of recovery if so", very good. Treatment these days has expanded so that there are targeted interventions depending on the characteristics and aggressiveness of bc. Please try not to worry too much as you wait for your biopsy, although I know that is a hard ask.

As far as "what they are seeing on the US", if you copy more of the language from the written report (you are entitled to a copy of the written report, by the way) we can better help you understand.

Sorry you are going through this, we are here to help ((hugs))

Dx 12/10/2002, DCIS, Right, 1cm, Stage 0, Grade 2, 0/3 nodes, ER-/PR-, HER2- Surgery 12/20/2002 Lumpectomy: Right; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Surgery 12/23/2003 Reconstruction (right): Nipple reconstruction Surgery Reconstruction (right): Saline implant Surgery Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement Surgery Mastectomy: Right

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