About 15 yrs ago had 3 benign cysts removed left breast. Had private health ins. and went for check every year. Husband made redundant last yr, had to give up ins. In UK, Health Service allows mammo every 3 years. Have been agitating for annual check as recommended by specialist but doc says any probs, see her, she'll send me to hosp.
Have lumpy breasts even though post - menopausal. Specialist said some women just do but if unusually tender or feel specific lump, come immediately. About 2 months ago very tender r. breast+pain under arm . Saw doc and asked for mammo. She said not necessary as had one 18 months ago. 4 weeks ago went back, reminded her that have had cyst prob in the past, suddenly changed attitude, must refer me. 3 weeks later, called hosp appts, never heard of me! Daughter said she would pay for me to see private.
Had mammo, specialist said bit thick in one place, ultrasound. Found 5cm cyst near r. nipple. Have to go back to have needle test. I am so angry doc dismissed me 2 months ago but also terrified as never had this. Could someone please explain in non-medical English what will happen. In UK we are not even told our blood group and we don't know the names of tests. They just say "tests". Believe it or not I am a very intelligent lady but the med profession treats us all as if we had one brain cell. Very kind, sometimes excellent care but we are not allowed to speak their language! I am so frightened I can't sleep. Please help. Thank you.
This enlarged lump in your breast could very well be another cyst or fibroadenoma (both benign lumps) However,only a biopsy can tell for sure what this growth represents.
The test your radiologist or breast specialist will perform ,could be either a FNA (fine needle aspiration) to extract the fluid from inside the cyst,or a core needle biopsy which is similar to FNA except that the needle used has a wider diameter and is equipped with a cutter that removes tissue samples.
Needle biopsies are simple procedures and should not cause you to panic or be scared.These biopsies are done under local anesthesia and leaves a small incision that does not require stitches for closure.
If the lump is not palpable,the radiologist uses either a mammogram or ultrasound that precisely pinpoints the location of the lump and it takes less than an hour to perform.Except for a minor sting from the injected anesthesia,you might feel a little discomfort but not real pain.Usually patients return to normal activities soon after the procedure.
The tissue or fluid extracted will then be examined by a pathologist under a microscope for a correct diagnosis.
Wishing you all the best and benign findings...
My advice, based on my wife's (current) experience is to firstly
WRITE A LIST OF QUESTIONS DOWN AND TAKE WITH YOU
TAKE SOMEBODY ELSE ALONG WITH YOU NEXT TIME YOU GO TO FOR TESTS OR A CONSULTATION AND
INSIST IN THE STRONGEST WAY THAT YOU WANT AN EXPLANATION OF EXACTLY WHAT THEY ARE DOING, AND WHY.
DON'T BE FOBBED OFF - BE STRONG AND INSIST POLITELY THAT THEY EXPLAIN, AND DON'T TAKE NO FOR AN ANSWER.
Its their job and they do these things all the time and are always busy and often communicate between themselves and forget to tell the patient. I'm sure you will get the information if you ask as I said. We have had to do that recently.
Yes, "bigkev414" is absolutely right and has given you very good advice!
Doctors,sometimes assume that patients probably know the answer and don't give much information unless they are asked.
I never leave my doctor's office,until I am completely satisfied that all my questions have been answered and understood.
You're perfectly entitled to change your doctor, if you aren't happy with the one you have now.
Again all the best to you...
Thank you so very much for your informed and detailed reply. I feel much better about the whole procedure now I know what they'll be doing. Fingers and toes crossed that I get a negative result. Will let you know. Thanks once again for taking the time and trouble x
You sound about as angry as I am! Thanks so much for your reply. I am usually quite assertive but, due to ME, sometimes just feel too tired to push. Also, been looking after Mum for 15 years, passed away last year, bless her. I'm so used to fighting her corner and have only just started to look after myself properly after 15 years of putting myself about 9th (mum, passed away, husband, two daughters, 3 grandkids etc etc.)
However, I will not let this pass re. doc fobbing me off and have some very strong words ready for her. I have to go back to specialist tomorrow and will be taking my husband (kicking and screaming, can't bear smell hosp since lost his own Mum last year).
He's furious with the med profession in general re. both our mums and my condition. Just hope he behaves himself and listens! You sound like you live in the UK too. Hope all is going well with your wife. P.S. If you do live in UK, don't be ill in August! That's when all the newly qualified docs are let loose in hosps to practice on us!
I understand the pressures, and can relate to the frustration and anger. I didn't mean to come across as angry, but used capitals to stress that we have been through the same process and unless you do speak up they assume you know as zouzi said. Firm but polite. If that doesn't work, firm and unpolite!
I am not English, and the biggest insult anybody can give an Australian is to mistake us for a pom. (smiling........)
I think the medicos are much the same here as in US and Britain, but from what I have read and been told by others we have good people in our private hospitals which is where my wife has been treated. The public ones unfortunately are a different story - 7 years of Socialist Government has almost ruined on of the worlds best health system, and skill levels of the doctors in the public system are often like the fish JohnWest rejects - not up to it and poorly qualified.
HOWEVER, like us all you will reach the point where all the pressures will suddenly lift away and the sun will shine again. (maybe not literally in England, but you know what I mean). You come to the edge of the precipice and then it kind of just suddenly goes away and you think 'what the hell', let''s stop fretting and just take it a day at a time.
Hi there. Sorry! Sorry! Sorry! You just didn't feel American to me and seemed to have the same probs re. docs. You're lucky you've only got the Socialist Govt. messing up your Health Service. We've had the three main parties messing ours up, starting with Tony Blair, for the last 20 odd years. Again, a brilliant Service once but now there are cuts, cuts, cuts c/o Cameron and his coalition sidekick. We had private ins until 2 years ago when my husband (who was 'indispensable' for 25 years) was suddenly made redundant when Iveco closed a complete dept.
He's still not properly right, cluster headaches, depressed, no motivation.
This from a strong man who never had a day's sick leave.
So, I have to trust the NHS now, but my younger daughter will pay for me to have a private, initial consultation with the specialist before I go, with fingers crossed, to the NHS hosp.
Up to the scan stage but have to wait for the appt. What a surprise.
You're right though, I was tearing my hair out but now I'm just thinking " Can't change anything, can't do anything, have to wait, get on with your life, woman!" Will let you know (prob 2015!) when I eventually get the results. Hope all going well for you and your wife. Take care.
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