My Take On...
What To Do If You Find A Lump
Soo… you've found a lump or have been called back "because there is something" on your mammo….
When faced with either scenario it's hard not to be swept up in a wave of instant negative thinking…. "What if? What if? What if? There is time for that later." Right now ASAP here is a protocol that I recommend:
Before any biopsy (either core biopsy done by a radiologist, or open biopsy done by a general surgeon) find a breast surgeon and make the soonest appointment. Explain to the scheduler that you've been invited to have a biopsy, and you wish to have the breast surgeon at the ready to do the next step.
At your visit to the breast surgeon, you will get your "what if's" answered and what options you have. This is your dress rehearsal if things go south and is your opportunity to see if you have a good fit with the breast surgeon.
OK… now back to biopsy land. Whoever does your biopsy, befriend their scheduler. (S)He needs to know that if your biopsy is positive for abnormal cells, you wish to proceed to the next step with a breast surgeon that you have already selected.
Then ASAP schedule a biopsy date that can be followed in very short order by a wider removal of breast tissue by your breast surgeon.
Recap - After the discovery:
1. Find a breast surgeon and make an appointment before your biopsy. Get questions answered and teams coordinated.
2. Biopsy pronto. Arrange it to occur so that if necessary, the next step with the breast surgeon happens with minimal delay.
As women of a certain age, you have likely organized and coordinated equally complex events… just not usually for yourself.
Biopsy results are usually available in 2-4 days. Malignant cells are found 15-20% of the time.
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