Resources to help painful hematoma 9 mos after sterotactic biopsy

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DudleysMom
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Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 11/19/2008 12:46 PM (GMT -7)   
My stereotactic biopsy had benign results. However, I had severe bleeding and pain and ended up in the ER twice afterwards; I was told I had a hematoma. My entire breast was black and engorged with blood for six weeks; the incision site oozed blood for 4 weeks. No treatment was recommended at the time although I sought several physicians' help.

Now 9 months later, they are saying that the extremely painful lump at the hematoma site is a fat necrosis and an organized hematoma. I don't want to have another surgery, but if that's what's needed to heal this, then I guess I would have to do it. My first surgeon recommended biopsying the biopsy and I sought a second opinion; she said the results of the biopsy were pretty clear and the location and characteristic appearance of the painful lump was typical for a hematoma. She said 4 months post-biopsy that if it persisted after 8 months, we would do surgery. Now at 9 months she is saying the opposite: she says there is nothing to be done, and I need to get used to the pain for the rest of my life.

I consulted an osteopath (out of pocket of course); she thought myofascial release on the hematoma might help and she did one treatment. I'm hurting quite a bit more from the treatment. I understand she's breaking up scar tissue, but I really don't want to make this even worse if this is the wrong kind of treatment. I'm pretty frustrated with the lack of help and the amount of pain I have from what was supposed to be a very minor and supposedly painless diagnostic procedure. Every professional has told I am not grateful enough. And I AM truly grateful that I don't have breast cancer. But I want this lump to heal, and I don't think that's asking too much.

Does anyone have any suggestions what kind of doctor might help me...plastic surgeon who deals with mastectomies, or a wound care specialist or some other kind. I have crap insurance and I think I'm getting really bad doctors. Does anyone have any experience with myofascial release on breast tissue scars?

This is not debilitating pain, but it keeps me awake at night and at times hurts enough that I have to lie down. It also makes me reluctant to pursue future preventive scans on my breasts due to fear of another adverse result. I'm hoping someone has some advice to offer me. Thanks in advance.

DudleysMom
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Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 2/17/2010 12:02 AM (GMT -7)   
DudleysMom here. It looks like some people have read this post, even though no one offered me any help. Maybe someone can be helped by the crap that I went through.

Well, after going to 7 surgeons, I finally found a surgeon who was willing to remove the painful lump that resulted from my stereotactic biopsy...22 months later. Yes, you're reading that right. Almost 2 years of pain. Two UNNECESSARY years of pain.

It was something called PASH, pseudoangiomatous stromal hyperplasia, and if PASH causes pain, the treatment is excision. PASH is a benign growth. I had been expecting either a foreign body reaction (from the titanium marker) and I think the surgeon was expecting scar tissue and/or possibly a damaged nerve. My pain in this area of my breast is now almost completely resolved, and the surgeon also corrected my large hypertrophic scar while she was operating (I now have a rapidly fading thin, linear scar that I think will be cosmetically quite acceptable). My nipple now points in the direction it used to (the surgeons all disputed me when I told them that it was pointing downward instead of out).

Let's review. Seven surgeons and five radiologists misdiagnosed this as 1) scar tissue 2) fat necrosis or 3) chronic hematoma. That's a lot of doctors guessing wrong, and not listening to the patient when she says "it can't be a necrosis, because it hurts." One ****** had me put capsaicin on it, which just burned the skin (he believed it was "phantom pain", what a douche).

I'm still suffering from severe fibrocystic disease, but my daily torture has been reduced somewhat, since now at least I can wear a supportive bra (when my biopsy was really bothering me, I couldn't tolerate a bra and had to spend most of my day lying down with an ice pack). I took tamoxifen for four months, which definitely helped my pain, but I've had to stop at least temporarily because of a side effect causing a problem with my eye.

And in case you're wondering, I don't drink any coffee, not even decaf. Cutting out caffeine didn't help me at all. But I refuse to start drinking it again, so I can continue to tell the doctors that they are COMPLETELY wrong in their assumption that I am causing my pain by drinking coffee. (I also don't eat chocolate, I've reduced my salt intake to a very low level, and I've cut my dairy consumption by 2/3, substituting almond milk. And I take the BS supplements, Vitamin E and Evening Primrose Oil--which have maybe helped 1%.) Mostly I survive by carrying instant icepacks with me all day long and taking the maximum amount of both Tylenol and Aleve every single day.

I think it is ridiculous how BAD the medical profession is about treating breast pain. Shame on them. (I do like my current surgeon somewhat better.) I can't imagine how bad it is for women suffering from chronic pain from mastectomies—I'm sure that they are told, as I was, that they are being incredibly ungrateful that they aren't dead from cancer. Quality of life seems to be an afterthought for most of the doctors in this area.

If you're curious, the excision procedure was remarkably better than my stereotactic biopsy (two weeks of a minor hematoma versus 6 months of a major hematomal; two weeks off from work versus 6 weeks). If I need another biopsy, it will be excisional. I've come to believe that the major advantage of a stereotactic biopsy is that it costs insurance companies less. The real reason why a titanium marker is necessary for this type of biopsy is that a severe hematoma is SO COMMON that if there is a cancerous finding, the hematoma might make it impossible to do a lumpectomy. Ask your doctor if you think I'm wrong.

barkyboys
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1564
   Posted 2/17/2010 2:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, dudleysmom. When a post is read and not responded to, it usually just means that no one has been through the ordeal that you have obviously been through, and don't have any suggestions to offer. I'm sorry you felt like it was due to people not wanting to help. I had severe fibrocystic pain, myself, and I can sympathize with that. I tried the laundry list of "this might help's" too, and none of it worked for me. Ironically, chemo put me into menopause, which is the only natural cure for fibrocystic pain that I know of. A friend of mine actually had a double mastectomy, not for breast cancer, but for fibrocystic pain.

I agree with you, that there are a lot of bad doctors out there. There's also a lot of "crap" insurance. We just have to be informed and discerning consumers... unfortunately.

I'm glad you have found some relief. The tamoxifen for fibrocystic pain is new to me, but makes total sense. Thanks for sharing your experience!

Hugs...
BEV
"There's a difference between a philosophy and a bumper sticker."  --Charles Schulz


CoralRing12
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2011
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 1/11/2011 12:32 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi DudleysMom,

Thanks for your posts! I too had a very bad time with my stereotactic breast biopsy (for microcalcs) a few months back. (Results benign). Though not quite as bad a time as you had!

In my case, the bruising that showed on the skin took weeks and weeks to heal. Even now I still have pain after vigorous activity (even though they said I could resume normal activity shortly after the biopsy, ha). I also still have lumps/knots at the incision site and elsewhere in the breast that weren't there before the biopsy. (I am getting those checked with a specialist soon.)

In the meantime, when I visit my doc, I will keep your story in mind!

Also, for fibrocystic pain (which I also have), talk to your doc about your iodine status; if you're iodine-deficient, correcting the deficiency may help, at least according to a few studies. (I found the info at this Oregon State University website: http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/minerals/iodine/#goitrogen --Scroll down to the Disease Treatment - Fibrocystic Breast Condition section to see a summary of the data on iodine and fibrocystic breast disease to date.)

I switched back to iodized salt, which seemed to help a little; I'm also going to ask about it at my appointment with the breast specialist.

Thanks again for sharing your story.

Mama38
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2011
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 8/29/2011 6:02 PM (GMT -7)   
i just recently had a biopsy and was told that it was just a intraductal noncancerous papiloma. i was fine until 6days later my breast felt alittle harder. but there isnt any bleeding at the inscision site the blood comes out of the nipple. Before i had the biopsy i had clear yellow sticky fluid coming out when i put warm soaks on it and massage the area. I am putting warm soaks on it now as well and applying pressure for 5mins just like they tell u to on the after care sheet. This is such a pain... i cant believe this is normal. Anyone have any advice im supposed to go meet with a breast surgeon at the request of the dr that did the biopsy, why is that necessary if she said she "believes" i will be ok and that its just a papiloma?

dlstrom
New Member


Date Joined Mar 2012
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 3/24/2012 10:37 AM (GMT -7)   
i just read your post today, due to the search on hematoma after a normal breast biopsy. i had the preventative biopsy on Tuesday 3/20/12 and now have a golf ball sized painful hematoma that the nurse and doctor don't seem to care about. i went into the biopsy pain free with normal breast and have come out with a painful huge lump. i am very tall and have very small breasts. I am a "nearly A". they made me "hold perfectly still" because i didn't have enough mass to make the clamps close to secure the breast during biopsy. no one cared about that either. it was the most painful thing i've ever had done. and this is preventative???? you went through worse and now i worry i will be on the same path. i appreciate your post. i am not alone.

barkyboys
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1564
   Posted 3/29/2012 5:54 PM (GMT -7)   
A hematoma should resolve, but it does take time. I've never had one, but everyone I know who has had a large one says it can take months, not days, to resolve. If it doesn't change or gets larger, or shows signs of infection, you really need to be seen by a doctor.

Sorry this was such an awful experience for you! Sounds like you were treated very poorly by all parties involved. I remember the day before my surgery, I went to see the Plastic surgeon who was doing my breast reconstruction. He took a sharpie and marked me up for the surgeon. I looked like those pictures in cookbooks of a side of beef, that show where all the different cuts of meat come from. Not physically painful, but emotionally, it was very much so.

Let me know how you're healing...
Hugs...
BEV
Bev
Breast Cancer forum moderator

eimme
New Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 5/3/2014 9:59 AM (GMT -7)   
I have a huge hematoma after biopsy.  My right breast is 5-6X bigger than the left one.  Is purple/back all over my arm pit, under my breast on my rib cage and over to the left breast.  Hard as a rock. Sharp shooting pains in my breast and down my right arm.  Keeping ice on it 24/7.  Surgeon says he cannot cut before hematoma goes away.  I read about women taking months to get these things resolved.  That's time my tumor has to replicate cancer cells to send out to the rest of my body.  My tumor was slightly bigger than 2.5cm  when diagnosed.  I am scared.  It's like I am doing nothing to fight the cancer right now.  I still have to have th left side biopsied.  They said doing both sides at the same time would be "too much".  I am scared I'll get another hematoma.  My labs said I have some kind of clotting disorder and I'm supposed to see a heme MD in August.  The biopsy is next week.  I asked for a psych consult to get medication to peel me off the ceiling  (I do read Barbara Johnson's spatula ministries books).  Can you tell I'm losing it?  I am tired of carrying my breast in my hand.  Can someone tell me this, too, shall pass.  Any remedies besides ice?
 
eimme

Tailia
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 29
   Posted 5/3/2014 6:00 PM (GMT -7)   
i am so sorry Eimme! that is a truely genuine sorry. i am so newly diagnosed myself that I cant give you and advice or tips i feel so bad about that hun! All i can do is try to comfort you and be hear to listen to you. I see you say this happened after your Biopsy i had no idea that this could happen from a biopsy, apperently I didnt fully understand everything they were saying to me. I didnt have anything like that happen, althugh contrary to what they said it did hurt me a lot =(. the first needle was fine the second holy moly!! they should be grateful i let them do any more after that but they did and i got my results. I am having to wait to see my specialist, i get in on the 8th of this month I thank God for that, so i can relate to feeling like not doing anything to fight the cancer, that is a real sun of a gun and the helplessness and fear is incredible! Please come back and let me know how you are doing and vent or cry or sit in silence or have a happy moment our feelings are what they are and i can accept the good the bad and the ugly no problem, what ever you need to do I am here i check in every day that I am home, if i miss a day or something it is because i am seeing the Dr's, but i will be back =) Big hug

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 5/27/2014 9:52 PM (GMT -7)   
I had the sterotactic biopsy from hell......no one told me anything...husband tried to ask questions and the Dr's asst stormed out of the room because she said his questions were "unnecessary" and said she was going to get the Dr...didn't even get the right place for the biopsy. Now I have a small knot where the needle was (on one side of where the needle was) and that is scarring me. No one seems to care. How cold these Dr's are and yet don't feel bad for taking our money. I don't get it. How would they like it if they got a taste of their own medicine? I have been a basket case because I'm not getting answers. This is so stressful. I will say a prayer for you all. God is our healer.

kamerin
New Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 5/29/2014 2:17 PM (GMT -7)   
heat and accupuncture.........have had 6 surgeries in 11 months and hematomas

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 6/22/2014 7:15 AM (GMT -7)   
So almost 3 weeks now and what dr's are calling a hematoma is still there and I have pain off and on. The skin feels very tender to the touch where the hematoma is. Is this normal? I fell asleep last night with an ice pack of solid frozen water in it and the ice pack was on through the night. Will that cause damage? The reason I ask is because they say to ice the area for 10 min or so at a time and I fell asleep with it on me for hours. Do you suppose the skin around the area that is tender to the touch a nerve thing or is it tender due to the hematoma itself? I can't seem to get any answers....just the standard covering their behinds answer of "everyone is different on the healing process".

Merrida
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 4771
   Posted 6/25/2014 1:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Be cautious with ice. I used ice packs as well, but because our nerves do get damaged, we may not feel the effects of the ice and can inadvertently burn our skin.

Definitely rotate....







M.
Moderator Anxiety/Panic Forum


"My time for tears will be at my Victory...not at the start of the War." ~~Vickie

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 6/25/2014 5:51 AM (GMT -7)   
Thank you for your reply. My skin does have that tender/burning feeling when lightly touching it. That happened before icing it. I'm told that there are a ton of nerves in the breast and with a stereotactic, it can definitely effect the nerves. Now, whether that is true or not, I'm not sure. I'm wondering if one would have the nerve pain from the sterotactic if they didn't have a hematoma?

Merrida
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 4771
   Posted 6/26/2014 1:03 PM (GMT -7)   
I can only speak for myself, and yes, I have.




M.
Moderator Anxiety/Panic Forum


"My time for tears will be at my Victory...not at the start of the War." ~~Vickie

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 7/2/2014 4:56 PM (GMT -7)   
Tomorrow will be 1 month since the biopsy. The hematoma seems smaller but it seems like when I stretch my arm as if I'm reaching for something, I get a twinge of pain off and on for about 3 min. Or so. Am I irritating this? Also, shouldn't the pain be totally gone by now? I mean it's been a month now! Any pressure against it doesn't feel to great either. I read that when they do mammograms that the hematoma can leave a lump or scar tissue or even calcifications which can make the radiologist think it could be a cancer thus possibly wanting to do a biopsy. When do the biopsies stop? I mean, I got this done because of microcalcifications (which were benign) and now I read that because of the biopsy and hematoma, that can also warrant another biopsy. Ughhh..I just don't want to be running in circles with biopsies ya know?

Merrida
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 4771
   Posted 7/6/2014 4:58 PM (GMT -7)   
Where I had my biopsies taken from still hurts. It's distracting and perhaps annoying.

I know that each individual is unique and so is our healing. I am guessing that other things factor in as well, such as the size/weight/density of our breasts, compression from bras, our sleep patterns,....all sorts of stuff.

Add in, like you mentioned, stretching while reaching, and that tissue is frequently being taxed.....

Have you consulted with your doc about this?









M.
Moderator Anxiety/Panic Forum


"My time for tears will be at my Victory...not at the start of the War." ~~Vickie

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 7/6/2014 5:12 PM (GMT -7)   
I have spoken to my Dr and he said pretty much the same as what you said...everyone is different in the healing process. How long has it been since you've had your biopsy? Have you had a mammogram since? If so,how did that go for you? I just don't know how long it would be to where the pain becomes abnormal. Thank you for sharing your experience.

Merrida
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 4771
   Posted 7/7/2014 11:14 AM (GMT -7)   
My biopsy was done in November 2013.

They did a mammo immediately after. Three of them if I recall correctly, so they could get all planes.

Was a titanium marker placed? I've got one implanted so that my follow-up mammos can show specifically where to focus.

I understand how frustrating it can feel when you hear of others who just bounced right back and didn't have any problems,....it's natural to start making comparisons.

But hold steadfast to what our doctors tell us with regards to how everyone heals differently.

I've had procedures where I was told it would be painful afterwards and nadda, zip, zilch, I was fine. Other times, I was told things will be fine, and I was in enough pain to require additional rx medication (including topical rx lidocaine, which they told me was "unusual," that generally people simply don't need that level of pain management, blah-blah-blah).

Well, yeah,...good for them. Point is that "I do!" And that's what matters.

Some of the nurses were a tad dismissive of my discomfort/pain, and even though the doctor told me my pain was highly unusual, he still had my back! We do not all fall neatly into little columns and categories....










M.
Moderator Anxiety/Panic Forum


"My time for tears will be at my Victory...not at the start of the War." ~~Vickie

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 7/7/2014 4:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Yes, I had a titanium mark put in. So, the Dr's are saying that your pain is unusual? What did they say to do? At what point do we start to think that the pain is abnormal? I just don't want to keep "running in circles" as I stated before with this but on the other hand feel like no one really knows what to do about pain from the biopsy after a certain amount of time except give you another mammogram and I don't want all that radiation.when I had my first biopsy which was totally messed up, they took pictures before and after the procedure and they took about 14 pictures. Ummm...I'm no expert but to me, that seems like a lot of radiation and when I got my second biopsy (which they knew what they were doing) they were able to do the biopsy off of my pictures that I got the first time and didn't do any more mammograms afterwards and sent in the sample. He said that he took more than normal just to cover the area and I agreed to that. So, now we are trying to establish back a normal baseline and they want to do an ultrasound and mammogram 6 mo from the date of the procedure. Still nervous about getting a mammogram regarding the radiation exposure.

Do you have a lot of pain or just when you do certain things? Can you sleep on that side? I wore a tank top instead of a "bra" for the first few weeks after the biopsy. I'm thinking that was not a good idea because I think the gravity pulled on the hematoma which I think slows the healing process.

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 7/7/2014 4:37 PM (GMT -7)   
I meant to ask you if they had you go back for another mammogram at 6 months? Are mammograms set at a certain amount of radiation or can they manipulate that and give you more radiation to get a better picture?

Merrida
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jul 2013
Total Posts : 4771
   Posted 7/7/2014 11:37 PM (GMT -7)   
I see my medical oncologist tomorrow and I'll find out then about when I'm scheduled for my follow up mammos.

At this point in my life, I would rather have the risk of exposure to the radiation of mammograms than the alternative. Plus, all the radiation I went through after my surgeries, I should glow at this point.

I guess it comes down to how we have to weigh out the pro's and con's and decide our priorities.

I'll find out tomorrow when my next official post-op mammo will be scheduled for.

They can also do MRI's and ultrasounds, and you can bring this up to your doctor as an option to mammos as the MRI's in particular tend to show a lot more detail. I've had them all done. But if that's a concern of yours, it may well be worth bringing up to your doc?









M.
Moderator Anxiety/Panic Forum


"My time for tears will be at my Victory...not at the start of the War." ~~Vickie

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 7/8/2014 7:46 AM (GMT -7)   
Yes, they had me do an MRI before the biopsy.
I have also done ultrasounds. I hope everything goes well fir you tomorrow. I'll say a prayer for you.

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 8/1/2014 3:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Okay, it's now almost 2 months since I have had my biopsy and although my hematoma bump has gone down quite a bit, sometimes it can really hurt. Yesterday I put on a tube top bra and it seemed like the pressure of the bra made the area of the hematoma hurt. Really? Two months later? Is that even normal that the pressure of a bra can irritate that tiny little gematoma now? Well, it sure kept me from sleeping on that side too. Does all this sound normal? I'm 3 days off of my monthly cycle now and wondered if ovulation could cause breast pain, but then I thought...same area as the hematoma so I ruled the ovulation thing out.

I'm so tired of hurting off and on with this. I feel like my breast will never get back to normal. Will it ever?

luvtherockymtns
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 8/13/2014 8:49 AM (GMT -7)   
Does it really take this long? Will the discomfort ever really go away? Will the breast ever be like it was before the biopsy? When I bump it, it just feels different sometimes.
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