Tuesday, June 11, 2013…..biopsy day. I woke up to my stomach feeling queasy from anxiety. I got dressed earlier and talked to my mom until my dad picked me up at 7:30. On the ride to the hospital it was casual conversation…I guess to keep my mind off the events to come. Every pause allowed my mind to wonder about the biopsy and of course that huge needle. I hope they don’t show me the needle; I know they say it’s going to feel like drawing blood, but I hate that feeling; I seriously hate needles; I hope I don’t cry…were just some of the thoughts that ran through my mind.
Hospital Admitting & Waiting Area
We arrived at the hospital at 7:45 and finished going through Hospital Admitting around 8:05 a.m. I was sent to radiology and waited to be called. My appointment was set for 8:30 a.m.; it seemed so far away. My eyes started watering while waiting, but I was trying so hard to hold back my tears not wanting my dad to see me upset. However, I think he could tell as each time a tear was about to fall he would spark up a conversation which helped a lot. I kept playing with my hands and bouncing my leg to ease my anxiety a bit. At times I thought about funny moments with my niece and nephews to take my mind off of things as well. I actually ended up laughing out loud in the waiting area while thinking of them. Nari asking tons of questions; Khairi staring at me with his big blue eyes and then smiling; Marley asking “Are you okay Auntie…Are you okay?!”; and Zo Zo giving me the ‘face’. These thoughts and conversations with my dad kept me busy until the nurse came around 8:45 a.m. I didn’t look at my dad as I was leaving because the tears would have started flowing.
After changing into one of those fancy hospital gowns, I was instructed to lay on a surgical bed. There were 4 nurses in the room. A nurse to hold my hand (truly an angel throughout my entire experience), another to track my vitals, one for prep, and I’m not sure what the other nurse was doing as she was in another room with a glass window. As the doctor walked in the first thing he said is “You’re so young!”…ummm yea I think we’ve pretty much established that but carry on. This was actually a different surgeon from the one I met during my consultation. I was a bit upset about there being a new doctor as I really liked the previous surgeon. But this new surgeon was nice and explained the procedure prior to and during the biopsy. Now to the procedure…
The doctor used an ultrasound to find the right breast lump in question….so we thought. While looking at the ultrasound, he indicated that the lump we were staring at was a fibroadenoma. He was unclear as to why a biopsy was ordered and asked if I wanted to move forward with the procedure. You can imagine that I was sitting there confused, anxious and nervous. My response was that the initial radiologist and previous surgeon were recommending the procedure be done sooooo…Hello!! I’m the patient and not the doctor. So he called the initial radiologist and sent images of the current ultrasound. Come to find out…right breast…around the same area…wrong lump. What?! So the surgeon basically found another lump. The surgeon did another ultrasound on my right breast to find the lump in question. Once he found the lump there was a “Oh I see…”. I never saw the lump of concern through ultrasound until the biopsy. I appreciate the surgeon for showing me the image as I saw a huge difference in shape and shadow compared to the fibroadenoma. The fibroadenoma was smooth and round while the other “mass” in question was circular with three lobules and a gray shadow. So the surgeon indicated that we would move forward with the biopsy.
My right breast was prepped with a blue antiseptic agent and the surrounding areas were covered. I asked if the biopsy was going to hurt and the nurse indicated that the worst part would be the numbing. The rest would feel like someone pressing down on my breast. He brought the needle over for numbing and I immediately grabbed the nurse’s hand and closed my eyes. I opened my eyes after a few seconds to see if the numbing was complete. By that time he was moving on to the next step; I didn’t feel a thing! That was the worst part? The surgeon grabbed a scalpel and indicated he was making a small incision. Yes I got to see the whole procedure up close and personal. Next he pulled out this huge contraption…I honestly can’t explain it. But I looked at the ultrasound and then back at my breast…there was literally this small/long metal rod sticking out my breast. I was in awe throughout the entire procedure. Next, a long needle was inserted to take the sample. There was a clipping sound as he took the sample out. I was able to see everything via the ultrasound and as he was completing the biopsy. After taking two samples the biopsy was complete. To be honest, it did not hurt and was actually interesting to watch.
Waiting Game Part II
I was told it would take two days to run the tests. The next step is to wait for the results. I scheduled my follow-up appointment which will be June 24th. Seems so far away but I will be calling for my results tomorrow if I do not hear from anyone today. The one thing I am not enjoying about this experience is all the professional opinions and no definitive answers. I completely understand that these things take time but going through this you simply want answers as soon as possible. My heart truly goes out to everyone that has to go through this waiting period. But patience is key.
My next post will be on definitive results…hopefully. Thank you to everyone for all the kind texts, prayers and concerns. I wish I could give more on my experience but as you can see this post is extremely long. I just wanted to share my biopsy experience for anyone that may be having this same experience and to many young women/men that may encounter this in the future. Truly thank you to everyone for taking the time to read this post and sharing in this experience.