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Request for help on side effects after an excisional breast biopsy?
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by lucky369, Oct 30, 2008
A mammogram detected that I had a microcalcification back in August.  6 weeks ago I had a stereotactic biopsy that came back flat epithelial atypia (benign) but they said "abnormal", so they suggested that I have an excisional biopsy to make sure the area was clear and I had that done 4 weeks ago... I'm very thankful that it all came benign.  But, I do have a nice size lump next to my incision spot.. I don't really have any pain and the bruising is almost gone... Could this lump be scarring or could it be a hemotoma?  My doctor is not very helpful and hard to reach.. I surely would appreciate any feedback from others that have experienced anything similar.  Thanks!
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Member Comments (32)
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by nannotnancy, Oct 30, 2008
I would definitely find a way to talk to the doctor (not always easy--be persistant!).  It's not exactly the same thing, but one of my biopsy sites (MRI guided) continues to hurt and looks strangely even after 2 months.  It feels hard (I'm told it can't be the clip I'm feeling) and it looks a little bit red.  It has caused more pain than the actual surgery I had following that. I know that hematomas can form, scar tissue, and who knows what--but still I think you'll feel better to get peace of mind on this. Good luck to you!
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by japdipBlank, Oct 30, 2008
Congratulations on your benign results..... the lump you describe could be both things you mentioned. If you are very concerned about this you should definitely contact your Surgeon's office. I'm sure you could at least speak to his/her nurse for some insight to the problem. If this is actually a lump it might very well be a hematoma. This will more than likely absosrb but it takes some time. Often warm moist heat is recommended to help with this process but you should contact your Surgeon before trying any form of treatment.    Regards ....
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by kittyluv1, Oct 31, 2008
Ditto on the congratulations for benign results!  I had an excisional biopsy done 9/9/08 and the incision area surrounding my areola was hard and lumpy until only one week ago,  It just takes time for the area to heal (as with any surgical incision(,  A hematoma is always a possibility, but if the lumpy area is not increasing in size or shows no sign of redness or irritation, it just takes time for the tissues to heal.
What was your surgeon's opinion on your post-op exam?  I would recommend you contact his office and express your concerns.  A followup appointment would help alleviate any worry regarding this problem.
Best wishes ---
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by lucky369, Oct 31, 2008
Surgeon said everything looked fine in the post-op exam.  I'm not having an increase in size, redness or irritation, just hardness and lumpy outside the incision toward the nipple.  I did schedule an appt. in about a week if it still looks funny.  Thanks much for the feedback, it really helps!  Family is sick of hearing me talk about it..  I think I just freak out about all this stuff.  Take care and Happy Halloween! : )
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by braveheart2, Oct 31, 2008
I had the exact same thing you did -- flat epithelial atypia found with stereotactic core needle biopsy after a microcalcification cluster was seen on a mammogram, which made an wire-guided excisional biopsy necessary to rule out associated cancer. I had a painful hematoma after the SCN biopsy which was cut away during the excisional biopsy, but even though my surgery was now 2 months ago, I still have a lot of hard, lumpy tissue near the incision site.

I know from past experience with excisional biopsies that this is part of the normal healing process and time will solve the problem ... and since your surgeon thinks you are healing well, try not to worry! Eventually the lumps will resorb, the hardness will soften, and the scar will fade. Relax and enjoy the good fortune of a benign result! Kind regards...
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by nannotnancy, Nov 01, 2008
Glad to hear that you're doing better!  It really helps to have this forum, because NO BOOK in the world could ever cover all the strange things we have to deal with!  It's good to hear that others have gone through similar experiences, and made it through.  Keep us posted.
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by lucky369, Nov 04, 2008
I've made an appt. for next week to get the Dr. to check it again.. Thanks so much for the support, it really makes me feel better hearing from you girls!  : )
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by jan1966, Nov 08, 2008
How was your recovery from the excisional biopsy........was it the same or more painful than the previous biopsy???  
Any feedback would be appreciated .thanks
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by lucky369, Nov 09, 2008
Recovery seems a lot worse, longer with more side effects, on the excisional biopsy than the first biopsy... I still have a lump about walnut size to the side of the incision.  I go on Tuesday to see if it is ok.  It actually seems to be getting smaller and less sore.  Have you had similar biopsy issues?