Topic: Are MRI's necessary after mastectomy

Forum: Second or Third Breast Cancer — For those confronting a new primary diagnosis or undergoing treatment.

Posted on: Sep 12, 2021 12:08PM

Posted on: Sep 12, 2021 12:08PM

dontwantthis wrote:

Hi,

I had a bilateral mastectomy after my 2nd breast cancer (same breast). I understand that even after a mastectomy there is a small chance of a reoccurence (very frightening (, so I am wondering if you get MRI's after your mastectomy?

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Sep 12, 2021 12:56PM livinlife wrote:

I know some have scans after mastectomy. I think most do not have any scans. I think insurance is not interested in paying for scans after mastectomy b/c recurrence risk is lower. .... I think some providers don't think it's necessary unless something suspicious arises as well. I had BMX and no scans. I only meet with my onc every 6 months for manual exam. And even at that it was one firm pat on my armpit and one firm pat on my left side and that was it! I"m sure she eyeballed my scar line.... If there's anything suspicious then I'm sure they would schedule either an ultrasound or MRI depending on the concern.

with expansive comedo necrosis & weak ER/PR Dx 7/2020, DCIS, Left, 2cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/1 nodes, ER+/PR+ Surgery 8/30/2020 Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Prophylactic mastectomy; Prophylactic mastectomy (Right)
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Sep 12, 2021 01:21PM dontwantthis wrote:

I have heard it is possible to do mammograms after a mastectomy (and implants), not sure why they wouldn't at least do that.

When I was finished treatment from my 1st cancer, and released from my Oncologist care, she said to me, I will not need to see you again. 13 years later I was back, so although it is a low risk of reoccurence, I am very anxious and would like to have more then a few pats on my breast, lymph nodes and a look at my scars, to be sure.

We all know the fear of the unknown.

Cheers,

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Sep 12, 2021 02:13PM spookiesmom wrote:

After the first time around there was no scan of any type. I still had my port, so would see MO every 3 months, and get it flushed. Was ok for 7 years, then I found a pea size lump on the other side. That got a ct with contrast, it lit up.

No scans of any kind since. Unless you have symptoms somewhere, they don’t do scans.

I had bmx first, so can’t speak to mammograms.

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Sep 12, 2021 09:00PM suqu31 wrote:

I have an annual mammogram, on both sides, cancer and non-cancer. I had a close margin on the skin side and had a re-excision, but my surgeon and I agreed it is reasonable to keep a close eye on things and hope to find any recurrence before it becomes invasive. I believe the plan is that I will have the mammograms for five years.

Every case is so different, but I think a mammogram is a reasonable compromise between no scans and MRIs, which are quite expensive. I would talk to my doctor about my concerns.

Re-excision for close anterior margin 10 days after BMX. Dx 10/31/2018, DCIS, Left, Stage 0, Grade 3, ER-/PR- Surgery 12/9/2018 Lymph node removal; Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Left); Prophylactic mastectomy; Prophylactic mastectomy (Right); Reconstruction (Left): Latissimus dorsi flap; Reconstruction (Right): Latissimus dorsi flap Dx 12/10/2018, DCIS, Left, 2cm, Stage 0, Grade 3, 0/3 nodes, ER-/PR- Surgery 12/19/2018 Surgery 9/13/2019 Reconstruction (Left): Fat grafting, Silicone implant; Reconstruction (Right): Fat grafting, Silicone implant
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Apr 25, 2022 02:17PM damnrecurrence wrote:

I had a lumpectomy (right) and radiation in 2012 for invasive ductal BC, then in Fall 2019 a mastectomy for a recurrence in the same area, with lat dorsi flap reconstruction. Clear margins, stage 1 both times. Surgeon was not going to order an MRI for right breast but decided I should have a single MRI for safety's sake in Fall 2020 and because of breast density. One small scar area that hadn't smoothed out completely turned out to be malignant. Have not been able to have surgery since because it is in my chest wall and skin and could not be controlled adequately in time for surgery and radiation. After many different treatments -- hormonal, targeted, chemo -- it is still growing and as of 2 weeks ago a new BC tumor biopsied in left armpit. So yes, although this is a late response to the question, please do try and get a followup MRI within 6 months of a mastectomy. (My insurance paid for it.)

Dx 4/2012, IDC, Right, <1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 7/2019, IDC, Right, 2cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 9/6/2019 Lymph node removal; Mastectomy; Mastectomy (Right); Reconstruction (Right): Latissimus dorsi flap, Silicone implant, Tissue Expander Dx 12/2020, IDC, Right, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2-, IHC Radiation Therapy Hormonal Therapy Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Surgery Lumpectomy; Lymph node removal Hormonal Therapy Arimidex (anastrozole) Targeted Therapy Ibrance (palbociclib) Radiation Therapy Breast Surgery
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Apr 26, 2022 01:13PM - edited Apr 26, 2022 01:13PM by 1982m

damn-I'm sorry to read you have had another recurrence. That's all I wanted to say.

Thanks for sharing. I know one of the reasons I chose to do a lumpectomy is bc they would keep doing yearly MRI's. I was told they wouldn't if Ihad a double mastectomy.

I hope you find a treatment that works well for you! It sounds like you have been through the ringer….

Dx 7/13/2021, IDC/DCIS, Left, <1, Stage IA, Grade 2, ER+/PR+, HER2+, IHC
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May 3, 2022 09:16AM dontwantthis wrote:

Thanks everyone for your responses. I did enc up having a mammogram and ultrasound because we found a small lump, turned out to be surgical clips.

I am having a lot of pain in my chest wall on my cancer side (not sure if that is normal), and I feel a lump, but I assume it would have shown up on the tests.

I'm also having some bad hip pain, who knows what that is, kind of scared to go for tests anymore.

The fear apparently never ends.

Good luck to all of you.


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