Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Jungleland, Aug 3, 2009.

  1. Jungleland

    Jungleland Welcome to my jungle!

    Hi family,

    I know I haven't been of much support lately, I am so sorry!

    Last week I had a huge round of tests ordered by my doctor. I have been so bad, been putting them off forever.

    My mammogram came back abnormal. I handled it very well in the doctor office, got in my car to drive home and had a panic attack.

    I have VERY strong family history of breast cancer.

    I have an ultrasound scheduled for next Monday. doctor said it may be just a cyst and I have been trying really hard to think that is what it is.

    But, I am scared. My mom's sister died 6 years ago, complications of breast CA. 2 cousins are survivors. Another aunt is also a survivor.

    Anyways, just had to post this, hoping it will help get it off my mind somewhat.

    Tomorrow is my B'day and my 1 year anniversay of being clean from abusing prescription medications. Some b'day gift!!!

    Thanks for "listening",
  2. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    Congrats on your anniversary of being clean! What a great accomplishment! Happy Birthday, too!

    Don't get yourself all worked up about the mammogram. Enjoy your accomplishment. You deserve to celebrate your birthday and anniversary....got any plans?
  3. Jungleland

    Jungleland Welcome to my jungle!

    Not really. We went to our oldest daughter's place yesterday and she made me a very yummy meal and cake. Kids swam all day, it was very relaxed and fun.

    Tomorrow behaviorist will be here for about 4 hours...fun, fun, fun!!

    Probably will have fast food for dinner.
  4. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    Hang in there, go easy on yourself. There was an info session on Aussie TV yesterday, the doctors on it were saying that mammograms are always worth having but they DO have a high 'false positive' result. However, it's considered worth it because they also pick up just about everything really early so mammorgams save lives.

    So don't panic. Chances are that despite your family history, this could be something simple, something benign or nothing at all really. But if it IS something - then if you have mammograms regularly, it's been caught at a much earlier stage than would have been found with physical examination. Also these days looking at the absolute worst case scenario, a full-on nastiest breast cancer of them all is stilll curable at this stage.

    A friend of ours has a mother who is a breast cancer survivor. Two aunts who have died. So she knew she was at risk. Genetically she carries the gene which predisposes her to breast cancer, so she chose to have her family as soon as she married. She'd had all her kids well before she turned 30 (I was just getting started!).

    Then they found breast cancer. despite all her vigilance and regular mammograms, she still got breast cancer. And it was the nastiest one she could have had - the most aggressive kind, she was told. They operated - removed part of one breast (not all of both as we thought they would do) and also took all the lymph nodes on that side. I forget exactly how many they took, 24 or something. And 22 were positive for cancer. Absolutely the worst possible, we figured. Health professionals who are friends of ours quietly shook their heads and said, "She'd dead. Just doesn't know it yet."

    She went through chemo and radiation treatment. Along the way they did biopsies of her other breast, they did reconstruction work (taking fat from her tummy - the fastest way to look good!) and although it was rough at times, she has come trough it. Not sure how many years it has been. I do remember her youngest daughter was just hitting puberty when it all began (and the symbolism of her mother losing breasts from cancer just as her own were developing, was certianly not lost on the girl - she was a mess for a while) and I know the girl has now finished high school and is at uni, has been for a few years. Mum is cancer-free, as far as the doctors can tell. And she looks great, feels great. In her shoes I would have said, "lop 'em both off" but she actually kept some of one breast, all of the other. And you wouldn't know to look at her (except for the tiny tattoos they did to line up the radiotherapy).

    So that is a good survival from worst case scenario.

    And it's highly likely you have a false positive.

    When I stop and think, I know of three females close to me (including a young niece) who have had partial or full mastectomies in recent years due to aggressive breast cancer. ALL of them are not only alive, but believed to be cancer-free. And looking/feeling great.

    Breast cancer is not the death sentence it was once, thanks to mammograms.

    So hang in there. Of course you're scared. it's nature's way of you getting yourself ready to handle it in case it's bad news. But you will come through this. Having the mammograms regularly is the best thing you can do for your health. And tihs is the other side of it all, the high chance of false positives.

    You'll be OK, whatever happens. You can do this.

    Oh, they were also saying (on different Aussie TV - the news tis time) that scientists have discovered that breast cancer arises from cells lining the milk ducts and not from breast stem cells as was previously thought. So there's new stuff all the time that helps them pinpoint treatment and improve understanding.

    Congrats on your year of being clean. There is no connection between it all. As far as I know, there is absolutely no link between abusing drugs of ANY kind, and breast cancer. So go ahead and enjoy your special day knowing that your dutiful vigilance has just paid off.

  5. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    Vickie, it's not time to worry yet. Don't create stress that isn't here or may not arrive.

    Congrats on the 1 year anniversary - huge accomplishment.
  6. ML

    ML Guest

    Adding my support. I just had a second mammo and ultrasound so I know what you're going through. My Aunt died at 59 with bc so I had similar feelings. I won't tell you not to worry but try to hold onto some positive thoughts. I will be praying for you. ML
  7. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Vicky! Congrats on your 1 year and Happy Birthday!

    Keep in mind that since you have such a fear due to family history, that you're more likely to have caught things earlier than most people would.

    Rattling beads for you!

  8. Star*

    Star* call 911........call 911


    SENDING OUT HUGE AND MAJOR POSITIVE VIBES FOR YOUR CONTINUED GOOD PHYSICAL AND MENTAL HEALTH......and....as always give my love and a huge hug to my baby...;)ALY...

    4 hours with the therapist - you had better be smiling when she leaves..lol

  9. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    I agree with the others not to worry too much until you know there's something to worry about.

    As Marg pointed out, mammograms do result in a lot of false positives. Also, like Marg I have a friend who had a very aggressive form of breast cancer. She had both breasts and the lymph nodes on both sides completely removed. After reconstructive surgery, she is completely cancer free. And, she's still able to wear awfully daring low-cut tops and you simply can't tell the difference from before her surgery.

    Congratulations on your year of being clean. What a wonderful accomplishment. Please do take the time to celebrate and revel in it. And hope you have a great birthday as well.

  10. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    I was just thinking about you last night as I was looking at the board calendar to see who was having a birthday this month.... Happy Birthday!

    I'm so sorry about the anxiety you are feeling over this upcoming MRI. I hope that the cyst, or whatever it is, is very small and either totally benign or caught early enough that it's easily made into a non-issue. Good for you for finally getting that mammogram. They can save lives if you get one regularly! You probably have a lot going for you considering there ARE so many breast cancer SURVIVORS in your family! They SURVIVED, right? I think that would improve your odds tremendously!

    Also, huge congrats of your one-year sobriety anniversary! :D That is a major deal and I'm sure you've worked very hard to get to this place for yourself. Keep up the good work. And keep taking good care of yourself!

    Keep us posted on your test results. I'll be praying for you!