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One Lump Or Two??? Oh, How About 28!!

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It was just one small lump, the size of a pea. Who knew what that innocuous little bit of tissue in my breast would lead to...and the surprising results of all the testing.

  Testing 1-2-3...

The afternoon of the test, I was sick inside wondering what exactly a mammogram entailed. I had heard the stories of how painful and awkward the procedure was and, honestly, I was shaking in my shoes!! Not only did I have a few lumps, but they were going to mash my lumpy boobs flat and dang near pull them off!! Oh, how I really wanted nothing more than to wake up and find this was a horrid nightmare.

The mammogram was not as bad as others had led me to believe. It was not pleasant by any means!! But I still had round boobs and they were still attached to my body--a little tender, but not shrieking in pain either. The mass of tissue, lumps, stringy things and such on the screen...was what nightmares are made of, however. I knew it was bad when they kept tacking small beads all over my breasts with tape and taking more pictures. Then they had me wait for the doctor...

Bravely, I sat in the cool room they placed me in. As I looked around I noticed there was an ultrasound machine set up. I smiled faintly. I remember seeing my daughter for the first time on one of those machines, she was waving at me. The doctor came in and said they were going to perform an ultrasound immediately on my breasts--wow!! From seeing your unborn child to testing breasts!! These were hot little machines. I laid back and got ready to deal with this new development.

As I was laying on the table, my mind tried to grasp everything that had happened in the last four days. Had it only been four days since I found the lump? It seemed like a lifetime. The only thing that kept running through my mind was that even though I wanted a reduction, please, God, not like this! The doctor kept mumbling about what was on the screen and I finally could not take it anymore!!

Just as I was ready to ask if I was going to have to go through a mastectomy and chemo, he sat up and put away the paddle. There was a mile of pictures printed out from the test and he had a few questions for me. I sat up and wrapped the gown around me protectively. He cleared his throat and said my right breast looked healthy and was lump free. I experienced a second of relief, then realized he said right breast. Did that mean...was my left...Oh nooooo!!!

  The Verdict.

My eyes were filling up with tears faster than I could blink them back. The doctor grabbed one of the pictures and set face up where we could look at it together and asked me if I could tell him how my breast had become so damaged from a serious impact. What? I stared blankly at him. What damage, and what does that have to do with the lumps in my breast? He repeated the question.

I told him about being in a car accident about 9 months earlier. The only impact I could possibly think of, much less remember! He nodded and said that explained it--grabbed a pen and started circling these little dots that permeated the picture. There was a total of 28, small, fluid filled cysts in my left breast. They were amazingly shaped in a circular pattern that was consistent to the steering wheel of a car.

I would have to have a biopsy done to make his diagnoses conclusive, but he thought my lumps were caused by blunt trauma to the breast. The lumps are fluid filled cysts which your breasts make as a protective measure when they are seriously injured and the tissue dies. Your breast will absorb the tissue and make oil filled cysts to prevent further necrosis, or death, of healthy tissue.

The lumps are benign and are not cancerous. They can be aspirated, or drained, by a needle but that usually results in further complications. In the meantime, if the biopsy came back as necrotic breast fluid then we would treat it non-invasively to start with and use more extreme methods if necessary. These lumps may cause a bit of tenderness but they are not dangerous physically. They can, however, prevent you from finding other lumps in the breast that may be cancerous and need treatment immediately.

Trauma to your breast does not cause cancer or even up the risk of developing cancer in your breasts. This rumor started due to the occurrence of diagnosed cancerous tumors rising as more women developed trauma and had it checked out with a physician. I had my biopsy and am home free--this time!! After two years of treatment, my
cysts number only 14 and those are getting smaller.

The lesson learned, don't panic and assume the worst!! Most of the time a lump will have a good explanation and not be cancerous. Of course any time you find one--get it checked out!! Just do not assume your breasts are headed south and as far as my reduction--Hell no!! I earned these babies!! Every single bit of them--cysts included.


Contributor: K101

Oh no! I love this story. I shared on FB too. I even learned a thing or two. When I read the part about your dr. asking how you had damage in your breast, the first thing in my mind was "the wreck!" I remembered you telling me about it. What a nightmare you had to go through. That was so awesome though, that the receptionist was so kind and did that for you. God, I love nice people! Lol.

And what I learned from you article: A few years ago, during the yearly exam crap (the breast exam and pap ugh!) the nurse I had told me I had lumps and they needed checking, but she didn't tell me much at all and scheduled an appt for 2 weeks later. I cried and was horrified! And sure enough, two weeks later, I came in and had a different (much better nurse if I must say so) and she told me they were cysts. Every since then they tell me the cysts are still there, but nothing at all serious, thank God. However, I am so glad you educated us on how those are not cancerous, even the bad ones like yours because my twin had to have this done -- where they used a needle! She was terrified, and apparently the doctor did not give her much info because she came home flippin' thinking she had breast cancer! It was awful. I think the nurse I had this past year mentioned something about fibroid something another with my lumpies, not sure if fibroid was the word, but I was certainly happy. Lol. I am so sorry you had such a huge scare and horrible time. Also, I love that you told us just how the mammagram was for you. I have been really scared of those things because I read articles all the time saying they ruin your breasts and cause long-term pain. Actually, an article right here I read said that your boobs will sag immensely after one mammagram! Lol. I believe too many things.

I am so glad you were cleared! I tell you, this article had me scared at first. I was afraid you were going to tell us some bad news. Thank God our lovely lady is well though! My partner's grandmother is going through chemo for breast cancer right now. She has been for a good while now, and she just lost her husband within the last year! I couldn't imagine going through that, and never ever want to.

Well, I loved this article! Very well done.

Contributor: js250

With your sister--you are thinking of Fibrocystic Breast Disease. The breast is naturaly fibrous and lumpy, but these lumps shrink and grow with the varying hormone levels and the lumps will shift, move completely, change shape and also disappear. I have this--but it is not as big of a deal as the name sounds, lol!! It basically is a scary way of telling someone they have lumpy boobs and need to be extra thorough with their breast checks.

Contributor: js250

Thank you, Kendra--your caring and concern means a lot to me!!! That you loved the article and that it eased some of your fears and questions about mammograms and cysts--priceless!! I value you opinions and thoughts and am greatly touched by your words and opinions!!! (Hugs!)

Contributor: Azula

That sounds like a nightmare! I'm glad everything turned out okay. My grandma and great-grandma both had breast cancer, but I have extremely large (36 I cup) breasts that are also severely fibrocystic, meaning they're full of tender lumps. I was seven or eight when my grandma died of breast cancer, and I remember bursting into tears because I already had so many lumps in my own breasts! I've basically given up on ever checking my own breasts for lumps, much less having a mammogram or anything. I just hope if I get breast cancer, my body will cure it for me. I'm working hard to lose weight and avoid cancerous foods so I don't get it.

Contributor: Jack M.
Jack M.  

I'm sorry you had to go through all that, and glad it wasn't too serious in the end. Thankyou for sharing with us.



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