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Avatar universal

Is it normal to wait a long time to get an appointment for diagnosis or treatment?

I had a mammogram on 11/9/07, a recall mammogram  done a week later. I have "a cluster of microcalcification" on my left breast, and the radiologist recommended a biopsy. I waited 1 week to see a breast surgeon. Now I have to wait for a biopsy on 12/6/07. I have a family history of breast cancer, the waiting is killing me. I was told I have to wait about 1 week to get biopsy result. Can someone please tell me if it is normal to wait for so long to get appointments? Then if the result is malignant how long should I wait for get surgery or treatment? What were your waiting periods? I really appreciate your answers

8 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi,  I can totally understand you, I had my mammogram in late October and 1 1/2 week later after I was called to get it re-done, I had a cluster of microcalcification on my left breast, it was a Friday when they called me, so Monday I had an Ultrasound which they found 3 more fluid filled cysts on the same breast.  The next week I was scheduled for a core needle biopsy but it was too painful for me the doctor decided to schedule me the next week for a surgical breast biopsy, I had it done on November 8th, after 1 week I went back to see the doctor and he said there was no firm results yet because they sent the biopsies to another hospital for a second opinion, I was really, really worried. Finally on November 27th, my doctor called me and he said its a good new what I have is "Atypical Ductal Hyperlasia" and it is less that 2 millimeter.  So I can totally understand you and I wish you all the best.
Avatar universal
Thanks for sharing your experience with me. If it's cancer, can the delaying of the diagnosis and treatment expedite the spread of cancer? I was told that I have to wait for 2 weeks to get a breast surgeon.
Avatar universal
The waiting can indeed be awful, but it is generally due to limitations of equipment. Waiting for the turnout from pathology is difficult to ascribe to equipment alone, as the preparation of some materials do take time and we do not want to be haphazard in preparing the specimens for reading.
The concern that the delay will translate to a big difference is equally understandable. There are no clear rules as to how soon things should run, but a difference of 2 weeks doesn't seem unreasonable. If we take a hint from other cancers, patients with cancers in the mouth see dentists to prepare their teeth prior to radiation. There is a healing period for the teeth of roughly 2 weeks before the radiation is delivered. This practice has not seemed to impact negatively for those cases.
Avatar universal
I found my lump mid Oct and had to wait 12 days to see my primary care doctor.  Then I had to wait another 16 days for a mammogram and ultrasound.  Those results are inconclusive, so now I have to wait another 13 days to see a surgeon.  

The waiting and anxiety is too much to handle.  My normally low blood pressure is through the roof right now, and since I have multiple sclerosis, this stress is bring on a flare up.

Don't they understand how scared we are?  I tried to get those appointments scheduled ASAP.  I even cried on the phone and told them about my MS, and no one seems to care.

So it will be about 5 weeks from finding the lump to getting to see  a surgeon, who probably won't do anything on that visit anyway, since I have breast implants.  So more waiting...
Avatar universal
Hi I want to wish you the best of luck and tell you from my experience the waiting is the worst.  I wish I could help you more but I can check here everyday and wait with you..I went for a mammo in August called back in September for spot compression and ultrasound and have to go back for another mammo this wednesday, the waiting these three months has been harder than anything I have been through, and the not knowing I have no idea if I am going back to to double check, or if it's standard or because something is wrong..I was told by the radiologist the last time everything was okay..

I suffer from anxiety disorder and panic attacks so I can really relate to everything you are feeling.  What has helped me is a hobby which is crocheting, sounds simple and silly but it does keep my mind busy, and when I get really anxious I phone a friend or come here.

Try and find something that you can concentrate on, even for small periods of time.  I know it's almost impossible, but we'll all get through this

Avatar universal
I guess we are all in the same boat.  At least we are in good company and have company.  We are not in this alone.   I started the process on Nov 7 and am currently awaiting core biopsy results.  Its been stressful and compounded by loss of original mammograms for a week.  My doc knows me really well and has prescribed some anti anxiety meds for the worst times.  Hopefully, we all will get good news!   Try to think positive.    STAY WELL!  :-)
Avatar universal

I don't think they care one way or the other if women are scared. When I had an abnormal mammogram, they SENT ME A LETTER! Nobody even bothered to call. What if the letter had gotten lost? What if I'd been away on holiday and had a hold on my mail? I always activate call forwarding, so a phone call I would have gotten. No, as I say above, I think we chose to be born the wrong gender. Bad joke. I'm sure if a man's PSA comes back high, he gets a call-back immediately.
Oh well, what good will the venting do me.
Avatar universal
I guess its the same everywhere.  I had my annual mammo at the end of September and had to go the following week for a redo. On Nov 7th I had a core biopsy that was DCIS.  Then I had to find a surgeon and do the consult etc.  Anyways, my surgery is Dec 6th and I can't WAIT to get this over with.  As long as its there you tend to think about it every day.  So all in all its been about 2 1/2 months since it was found.  Stay busy and positive....and know you aren't alone in this.  GOOD LUCK TO ALL
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