You've been very helpful in the past so here I am with several more questions. I had a lumpectomy for invasive ductal, stage 2 exactly 2 years ago. Surgery was followed by chemo and rad. About a year ago, a small lump was found on my scar line but close to the skin surface, a FNB said it was a fibroadenoma. Soon after that biopsy, a harder lump deeper in the breast tissue but directly underneath this smaller lump was felt. It has continued to grow and feels exactly like the cancer tumor did--round and hard. My surgeon has felt it and believes it is scar tissue in the tumor bed. So my questions are: 1) does deep lumpectomy scar tissue often tend to feel like the tumor that was removed (round, hard) and 2)how long after all the surgery and treatment does such scar tissue usually continue to grow? Thanks so much for your answers! (As a check, my radiologist is setting up breast MRIs for me as I have very dense breast tissue which prevented my original BC from showing up on my mammos)
Dear vermontgirl: Scar tissue can feel very hard and the shap can be variable but could feel round. Most of the time scar tissue forms soon after surgery but that's not to say that this couldn't be scar tissue. I think the MRI is a good idea because no matter how confident the doctor is, you will continue to worry. Hopefully, the MRI will clarify this for you.
I would opt for a biopsy, rather than the mri: an image is only an image. Even if it looks ok, a growing hard mass 2 years after treatment needs a diagnosis. I'd consider a core needle biopsy, which your surgeon ought to be able to do easily -- when the lump is feelable, it doesn't need xray localization.
Vermontgirl, you are right to question...my mother was told by 2 drs. that it was probably just scar tissue also & the recent mammograms did not show conclusive evidence...she too felt it was growing & the 2nd dr. opted for a mastectomy since it was her 4th biopsy & lumpectomy combined in that breast but still insisted "he'd be suprised if it was anything". Well surprise! It was cancerous & she's now diagnosed w/stage III. Be dilegent until YOU feel comfortable w/ the answers. Good Luck!
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