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time for some answers

We are finally near the end of the three part blog updating journey. Whew! I am so ready to find out what the heck is going on with my body.


If you read PART ONE or PART TWO of my recent experience, you will know I am crazy frustrated and slightly paranoid that my medical team is going to screw another thing up. So, I asked everyone when I went in for the biopsy that they were going to do a cancer screening (the original ER doctor was concerned about) and test for all the autoimmune things (the PET scan Radiologist, Ultrasound Radiologist, and my Oncologist thinks I have). 

I am coming into this with a fresh start. I want to make sure that they test for everything the biopsy can because I really don't want to have to come back and do this again. All I know is something isn't right with me - and I hope this helps me figure out what it is.

The Radiologist who did the biopsy was more informative than all the other doctors I have seen so far. She explained things more clearly and in complete contrast (in some ways) to my other doctors:

  1. My original cancer was on the right side. My left lymph nodes are reactive. So, it would be odd for the breast cancer to be showing up there. Especially since I have no masses (recent mammogram showed nothing).
  2. My PET scan only showed the left lymph nodes. Lymphoma generally is bilateral, so it would be odd for this to be it.

3. Cat Scratch lymph nodes generally look more aggressive and more would be involved. So, that would be odd. As you can plainly see, my cat is insulted. She's an older housecat - and if you knew my husband, you would know that fleas anywhere near our home or yard is impossible... he loves his yard and he takes great pride in keeping it perfect (including no bugs like fleas). Though my cat might be trying to kill me, she would do it in a more clever way.

4. I do have multiple issues with multiple lymph nodes, so maybe another autoimmune issue. But the biopsy can only check for so many things.

The Radiologist was like you are just presenting in an odd way. But, you never know what it could be. Sometimes people test positive for these things and we were sure it wouldn't be cancer. So, it's better to check. She was going to test for everything she could (breast cancer, lymphoma, infections) - sending off Fresh & Permanent Biopsies (click link to learn what this and Slides mean) .

HELLO, she is saying exactly what I have been saying since I saw my CT almost a month ago!

She did the ultrasound guided needle biopsy in the axillary lymph nodes. For those who do not know, 

  1. you will lay on your side, leaning back some.
  2. a ultrasound tech will find the axillary lymph nodes located below your arm pit. 
  3. she will maker up the location for the Radiologist, and it even looks like my left breast consent, "yes", to the biopsy (ha!).
  4. the tech nurse uses the ultrasound to find the location and the Radiologist will insert a long needle through your skin and into the lymph node (mine said she used a thicker needle to get more lymph fluid and tissue for me).
  5. the needle has a section that can cut the tissue sample - it makes a loud click when it happens. there will be many samples taken. You may feel some pain. I did, but it was when she had to move the needle around before taking samples.
  6. then a tag was placed into my lymph node just in case they needed to go back or find it if something is wrong.

When I left, the Radiologist said I would know something on Thursday. Two days isn't a bad wait. 

So, I waited. And late Thursday afternoon, the office called to say they need to do a few more slides. I said, no news is good news. They responded with no news in no news - not good news or bad news. - I am secretly thinking YIKES - that doesn't sound good.

So more waiting. And now, I am slightly concerning because it means that something may need more pathology answers, like for cancer (determining what feeds it). However, sometimes pathologists are just busy. But, I know I am a at risk (had cancer before) patient which tends to go faster.

Last time I had cancer, I knew the next day. This time, they are making me wait.

On Friday afternoon, I got the call...

You've got breast cancer. 
But, it's not the same breast cancer as last time. 

I guess this was one way to get me back to update my blog?!?


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