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Calcifications
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Calcifications

In Mar 03 I had my first mammo which showed "cluster of microcalcifications."  I was called back for a magnification view which reported "a probably benign finding" and I was asked to come back in 6 months.  I just received my reminder in the mail to come back soon and I am really scared.  I guess if the calcifications have changed in any way, I am on my way to a biopsy.   I read where Dr. Love says that 20 percent of the time the calcifications are indications of cancer.  I guess I have a 80 perent chance they are not.  Anyway, I am terrified to make the call for the followup.  Has anyone been thru this?  Are the odds in my favor?   Thanks for any information.
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Avatar_n_tn
Dear pencase, The findings of the mammogram and the magnification views give the radiologist clues as to how suspicious the findings are and recommendations for follow-up.  Because this was you first mammogram, and nothing to compare it to, and even though it is interpreted as "a probable benign finding" getting the repeat mammogram to be more on the safe side.
14 Comments
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Avatar_n_tn
Just make the call. You will feel much better after you have the mamagram done. I'ts totally understandable to be scared of the unknown.I had the same thing happen last fall. I had my 1st mamagram, they found cluster of microcalcification, instead of waiting the doctor wanted me to talk to a surgeon and she wanted the biopsy, and it came back with, No Cancer. But found some cells atypical ductal hyperplasia, which puts me at little higher of a risk. Just call. the unknown will drive you crazy.
Take care and good luck.Rfrancis
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Avatar_f_tn
Please make your call. I know its scary, I've been there done that twice so far and made the call myself today for a follow-up mammo after my second biopsy.
They can apparently tell from how your microcalc's are clustered if they are more likely to be of a benign nature and it sounds like they are reasonably sure yours are. If they were even slightly suspicious I would think you would have been scheduled to see a surgeon for a biopsy immediately. (I know I was) Chances are this is nothing to worry about and you will feel much better knowing for certain. This is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. Make the call and set up your mammo.
Good luck and keep us posted.
Bet
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Avatar_n_tn
My radiologists followed a cluster of microcalcifications evey 6 months for 1 1/2 years. They did not change "one iota". Since the microcalcifications were up against my chest wall, and not all my previous mammograms caught that area, they were unsure of when the microcalcifications first appeared. Anyhow, microcalcifications do not automatically mean cancer. Good luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thank you all so much for your replies.   I will post as soon as I have the follow-up mammo.   I am praying for no changes to the calcifications.  Thanks again - and if anyone has any additional information, please post!
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Avatar_n_tn
Last month I had my third six month followup mamogram (mammogram).  Unfortunately for me the calcifications had continued to increase in numbers and were seen to now be linear and branching.  I had a sterotactic biopsy and got the results back yesterday with the diagnosis of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).  I'm now doing the reseach on treatment and selecting a surgeon.   This is all very scary and hopefully for you it will turn out to be of no concern or that it will just need to be checked from time to time.  But even if it turns out to be cancer, it sure is better to know that you did everything you could to catch it early when your chances for survival are greatly enhanced and you have a greater range of treatment options.  Good luck
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Avatar_n_tn
I made my call and am scheduled for the short-term followup on 3 Sep.   After reading so many of these posts, I am more scared than ever.  So many posts began with microcalcifications.   I will try and not worry - especially since there is a good chance there will be no change in the calcifications.   Thanks to all replies and I welcome more information.  Thanks -
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Avatar_n_tn
"Please try not to worry." That is what everyone is saying. Alot of people have been in your shoes, I know I have. But I try to ask one simple question to myself.
1. Is there anything I can do right now about this situation?
The answer usually is NO.
It is out of your hands for now. You made the call, got the appt. set up, and that is all you can do for now.
Please try not worry so much. It's natural for you to worry about the unknown, But the unknown might be worth waiting for.
Take Care,rfrancis
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Avatar_n_tn
rfrancis:  thank you for your kind words - and for being so rationale.  you are right - it is out of my hands.   i will let you know what happens on the 3rd.   thanks again - you are very kind.  this whole forum is.   to suzo:  i am praying you found a "good team" and finding answers.  thanks again!
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Avatar_n_tn
Pen, thanks for the prayers.  I think rfancis has the right focus.  "Take action on what you have control over and try to put the rest of the worry aside."  I had a lumpectomy on Monday and am waiting the latest pathology report.  The waiting is the most difficult.  I've decided to worry on Tuesdays and Fridays and focus on other stuff the rest of the time :)  I'll be thinking of you on the 3rd..and saying a prayer that all is well.
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Avatar_n_tn
Pencase:  Hope all went well with your exam and results.  I got my pathology report back after the lumpectomy and confirmed DCIS with .3cm greatest dimension, clean margins and no invasive tumor, so all good news.  Hope your news was even better with just microcalcifications that are unchanged.
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Avatar_n_tn
Suzo:  I am glad everything is going to be okay with you.  That is good news.  I also received good news that the calcifications have not changed.  Radiologist said they are scattered.  I have not received my "official" report yet.  I guess it will still have be a "#3 - Probably benign finding" since there was no biopsy to take the "probably" out.   I was happy to hear it but still wonder if I should take all of my pictures for a second opinion or just wait for my next mammo in Mar 04 (back to regular schedule).  Thanks!
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Avatar_n_tn
Wonderful news!  As for second opinion I just made arrangements to have my tissue slides evaluated by another pathologist.  I guess I just would sleep better knowing that an indepent look at the tissues arrived at the same optimistic conclusion, so I can be confident that I'm choosing the right course of action.  Perhaps you should ask yourself if you are going to be a nervous wreck until Mar 04 without a second opinion if so go for it.
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi! I recently had a mammogram come back with a diagnosis of calcifications and repeat of mammogram in 6 months.  After consulting my physician he is recommending a repeat in 4 months because of the family history, grandmother (died with breat cancer), aunt and two cousins (who both had breast cancer before the age of 40).  I have had a total hyster. and am not sure what to do any suggestions would be fantastic.  Do I consult a breat specialists or wait 4 months?  Thanks!
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