Wednesday, February 23, 2011

that's just the way it goes

Finally got my biopsy results back on friday. I guess 7 days is not long but when it took less than 24 hours to get my first biopsy results back 7 days feels like a lifetime. And they aren't even done yet. They still haven't tested it for er/pr/her2 involvement. So more dcis (the good kind of cancer). Noninvasive in appearance. Kid tested, mother approved... Sorry, feeling loopy after a tough day of doctor appointments. I do miss my old, smaller, calmer hospital in utah and my breast surgeon who treated me so well.

Got the call from substitute radiologist with my results. He started off blabbing on about atypical cells and I was a bit relieved thinking that was all I had. But he kept talking in circles and was mentioning dcis and I finally cut him off and said "are you saying it's dcis?" Yes. Then he started blabbing on about treatment options and how some brca+ women go so far as bilateral mastectomies so I had to cut him off again and told him I knew all about dcis since I've already had it. Oh, he didn't realize this. Thanks for reading my chart, doc! I was getting a little upset by now so when he asked if I had any questions I said no and hung up while he was saying goodbye. I'm sure I made his day.

I was very confused after talking with him. He said that all the pathologists looked at it and discussed it before deciding that it was dcis. It can be somewhat subjective to determine dcis and is often misdiagnosed. When I met with the breast surgeon today the first question I asked her was are they sure that's what I have? Still holding out hope that maybe I just had some atypical cells. But she said yes, medium grade dcis and 3 pathologists signed off on it so not much to question. Now hours later I'm thinking if it wasn't much of a question then why did 3 of them need to look at it? Regardless, it is time to do something. Looking back at my original mri from 2009, there was an enhancement in the same spot where they biopsied me this time. Back then, they wrote it off as nothing of concern. My guess is that is has been in me for years. They say it can take about 7 years before this stuff shows up on the films.

The doc says I can safely wait as long as 6 months to have a lumpectomy or mastectomy. That is the one good thing I heard today. Tomorrow is my first official day as an employee. I'm going in to fill out my paperwork and watch some videos. I have no intention of telling them that I need time off for surgery until I have established myself as a valuable employee. Plus I don't want to undergo surgery until my class is over. And it would be great to wait until June anyway because dw will be off from work. So I think it will be sometime in june when i will be cutting both bitches off. Time to get rid of them. I've been lucky twice only getting the baby cancer. I can't push my luck much more. Besides, I think my boob will look terrible this time with a lumpectomy because of where the dcis is. Might as well just get rid of it. And I am so tired of doctors and tests and procedures and waiting for results. So my biggest decision now is about reconstruction. I've already decided no flaps for me. I know I was set on diep last time but after my hyst/ooph I decided I didn't want to tear up any other parts of my body. Not keen on the whole expander process. I really, really don't have the patience for that! I would consider one-step implants but even then, not sure about it. Some people complain about not liking the way implants feel when they are doing active things and I'm a very active person. I know it could be something you get used to but I don't know. It's all such a bother. But if I decide not to have any reconstruction, the scars are worse because there is nothing to hide them. And I don't want to look like a boy. Some women still look really sexy boobless but I don't know what I'll look like. One good thing is that you can always reconstruct down the road if you change your mind. Such a bother. I wish they'd hurry up with that pig-boob study where they are trying to grow pig boobs by injecting them with their own fat. Probably some stem cell thing.

Been trying to find pics online of women who chose not to have reconstruction. Everyone says to look at but they don't have that many pictures. I remember seeing some once of a woman on the beach with her family and she looked awesome but I can't find it now. If you know of any good pics, please send them my way. I'm trying to get an idea of the different incision options and what looks best. And if you have a favorite kaiser breast surgeon in the bay area, let me know.


  1. I actually can't believe how calm you sound about this. I'm sure I'd be freaking out. You're right though, it's time to do it. I know a few people who've had no reconstruction. If you check out the Scar Project, there are a few artistic photos of women with no reconstruction who look amazing. There's also the one step reconstruction (no expanders) which you might want to look into, it's straight to implants. Good luck, and you know I'm here if you need any help. (((hugs)))

  2. figured that was the decision-when I got your text. Though decision but the right one I believe as well. Let me know if you need anything-I'll give you a call this weekend-hugs! Jen

  3. Oh, Janine, I was reading your post yelling, "Damn, damn, damn!" I'm sorry you have to go through more crap. I was so hoping for good news for you. I, too, am amazed at how calm you sound. I imagine you've spent a long time thinking of the "what if this comes back" scenario. Hugs to you and your DW.

  4. New to your blog, sorry to hear about your current situation. Good luck going forward.