new to breast cancer

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Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 188
   Posted 8/5/2005 4:50 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi ladies... I am new to the club - I found a lump in my right breast at 8 months pregnant. I had an ultrasound done and the doctor was almost positive it was just a fibroid, but due to the significant amount of breast cancer in my family, I pushed for a biopsy. Unfortunately the biopsy came back as inconclusive, so they scheduled me for a lumpectomy and (if required) lymph node removal. That was Tuesday. So now I feel like the bionic woman with my 2 drains hanging around my waist. My question is this... the surgeon who did the removal is not a real talkative kind of guy... and I dont exactly know what kind of questions to ask him.Before my surgery i had a bone scan, chest x-ray, and abdominal ultrasound. I am to call him next week, and if he has the results of all, my appointment will be the next day. I want to have a list of questions for him, since he doesnt seem to want to volunteer too much info.Oh, and by the way, my healthy little girl was born on may 31, and is as cute as can be.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 349
   Posted 8/5/2005 6:11 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi, Chantry, sorry you had to join us, but you will get lots of input from these ladies. I am much older than you and was diagnosed in December. I, too, have lots of b/c in my family. I'll just get this started and many others will join in and let you know other questions.
1. What type of cancer?
2. How large is the tumor? (helps in "Staging")
3. Were lymphnodes invloved? If so, how many? (Helps to determine treatment)
4. Are you ER/PR + or -? (Results determine if you get hormone therapy or not)
5. Are you HER2 + or -
6. When can you see oncologist?
The oncologist will set up your treatment plan. Most questions will be for the oncologist. Essentially, the surgeon's bit is over. Stay in touch here on the forum and these ladies will help with your questions. You'll see lots of young women here -- and lots of older women like me, too. Good luck, and God Bless You.
By the way, don't forget to do the exercises your surgeon recommended. This helps you regain mobility in your arm. It may take as long as 6 weeks for it to get back, so keep trying.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2004
Total Posts : 340
   Posted 8/5/2005 6:28 PM (GMT -7)   
First, Congrats on your new baby girl.
So very sorry that you have to be here. You should be able to get an answer to just about any question you ask.
You have found a great group of women here.
I will say a prayer for only good news. Sorry that you have had so much to go through.
Take care

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2272
   Posted 8/5/2005 6:33 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Chantry, welcome! I am so sorry you are going through this right now, thank goodness all is well with the baby. What is her name? I am 36, living in Michigan. Like Juju said, there are lots of us "younger" women here, but age does not matter here on the internet, we're all here for each other 24/7.

Your surgeon does the surgery, not the he will not be a good resource regarding the treatment plan other than surgery. And if you are not comfortable, or even if you are, consider a second opinion once you see the onc too.

More questions to ask/ items to ponder....
1. Did he get clear margins?
2. Is more surgery recommended? If so, what? If mastectomy is recommended, can he connect you with a plastic surgeon if you want reconstruction?
3. Consider getting copies of any and all reports (path, radiology, etc).
4. Consider taking a tape recorder and a friend/ husband. No matter how clear your mind is, it is nearly impossible to hear it all correctly

Lots of questions will be for the oncologist, who is the one that will have the longer relationship with you. I read what I could handle, and not too much information, so I could ask the right questions. Take it easy with reading though, it is easy to get scared unnecessarily.

You sound like you are doing really well! Glad you found us, and please do not hesitate to ask us anything at all...

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2005
Total Posts : 730
   Posted 8/6/2005 9:38 AM (GMT -7)   

Hello Chantry! First, Congrats on the birth of your daughter. I am a little partial to girls as I have 2 dd's and 3 granddaughters. Just got my first grandson 6-1.

You have rec'd lots of good advice from the ladies. I agree w/ everything that they have told you. I might add for you to keep a tablet or notebook and pen w/ you so that you can write down any questions that you might think matter how small or silly they sound. As for your surgeon, remember that you are paying him to do his job. Make him answer your questions. If you don't feel comfortable, then seek out another surgeon. You don't have to stay w/ this one should all of your tests indicate that you need further surgery. It is very important, as Lori said, to take a tape recorder and someone w/ you to your appointment.

Please stay in touch and let us know what other questions you might have. We have all been where you are right now and know how frightened and frustrated you are feeling.

Hugs and prayers....Deb


Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2004
Total Posts : 826
   Posted 8/6/2005 10:05 AM (GMT -7)   
Welcome, Chantry, but sorry you have to be here.  Congratulations on the new baby!  How exciting.  This must be a very difficult time for you - dealing with a new baby and surgery.  This has been a very helpful place for me and I know it will be for you.  I have just finished all my treatment, so I am now a 'graduate'.  Now, I'm here to support and help others through their journey with this awful disease.
I didn't ask a lot of questions, but my oncologist was very informative.  The surgeons usually aren't that good with their 'bedside manner'.  I have been very fortunate to have a great medical team throughout this whole ordeal.  All of the questions already mentioned here are good.  You need to know exactly what type of cancer it is(IF it is), what stage it is, if lymph nodes were involved and how many, ER/PR status, HER2NEU status.  These will determine what type of treatment you will receive.
Please let us know as soon as you do.  Hoping for B9, B9, B9!!!
L & H,

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2044
   Posted 8/6/2005 10:33 AM (GMT -7)   
Just want to add my welcome and congrats on the birth of your daughter. We love new babies around here. It's one of the things that keeps us going. I am so glad to learn that you pushed for a biopsy even though the doctor was not sure it was necessary. Time after time, we tell gals that the biopsy is the only way to get the answers you need. Sorry your pathology was inconclusive. But, whatever it was it is gone now. That's what counts. Take a few mintues to read about us in the roll call post at the top of the board. Feel free to add yourself to the list. Welcoming hugs, Lauri
"Go confidently into the direction of your dreams. Live the life you always imagined" Thoreau
Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 243
   Posted 8/6/2005 3:32 PM (GMT -7)   

Welcome to the board and congrat on the the little one. :-) I too am new here and still haven't grasped all this. These ladies have a lot of info here. I do more reading than posting, but then I may ask a question or 2 when someone mentions something I've never heard of. Sorry you have to be here.

Lots of {{hugs}}

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 188
   Posted 8/6/2005 5:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks so much for all of your support and info! I'm finding it hard to keep negative thoughts at bay...especially worrying about how I will deal with a little one if I have to go through chemo, but having her does keep me grounded. Hopefully I will find out on Wed. what the situation is, and then I will probably be back with a whole new slew of questions! Thanks so much for welcoming me!

There are no wrong turnings, only paths we did not know we were meant to take - Guy Gavriel Kay

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 2921
   Posted 8/7/2005 11:12 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Chantry, I think you have gotten many good suggestions already, so I will just add my hugs and prayers that your news is good news. If you have to do chemo, you should be able to manage with a baby and a little help. My daughter had a 7 and 3 year old when she went through chemo and managed quite well. I offered to keep the kids anytime she needed me but she kept them with her most of the time. Hugs MK

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jul 2003
Total Posts : 1294
   Posted 8/8/2005 7:35 AM (GMT -7)   
Yea, a new little life. Congratulations. Many of us have answered you and given you great suggestions and advice. So I will just welcome you to this very popular club that is here for a very unpopular reason. But we are all friends and love each other and help. So hang in with us.

Love and hugs,

Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: if one falls down, his friend can help him up.  Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

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