Ohh, my lovely Vickie,
Thank you for the inquiry.
When I went for the mammogram on Monday and they noticed a mass that needed first the ultrasound and then the biopsy,...they told me I would have the results in 3-4 business days.
I very specifically asked if they would tell me the results immediately over the phone when they called. In my past experience, they only gave positive (well you know, I mean "negative") results over the phone, and always called you into the office if anything suspicious came up.
To me, that is more anxiety provoking....because I'd know if they had to call me in, it wasn't good news.
The Dr that did the biopsy told me (as I asked her and her PA to clarify) that YES they will share the results with me on the phone immediately and not require to make another visit in. I was happy about this as it was one less worry.
This how the experience went:
(1) This morning, my PCP in MA phoned me (from her home, on her day off), said she spoke to the Dr. who did my biopsies, and she asked how I was doing,...(remember, SHE had to authorize the biopsy or they would not have even done it). She then said, "I'm sorry, but I don't have good news for you. The biopsy results came back and you do have cancer." We then spent a good amount of time on the phone, she asked me if I was alone, if I needed anything, how am I coping, do I have anyone who can be with me. It was a caring & compassionate chat....
Since I still don't have a PCP up here in NH, I asked her if I could please keep her as my PCP for a bit, especially now, even with the distance, as she's been my anchor seeing me through so many health problems. She said of course, she wasn't going to leave me, and she'd be there for me as I transferred up here.
She said to give her an hour, she had to arrange to have my medical records faxed up to the Breast Health Center so they can see my health history for the years she's treated me. Yes, I authorized this. She spoke with the Dr who did the biopsy and explained that SHE would be calling me when she got the records.
(2) I phoned the PA of the Dr. who did the biopsy, letting her know my PCP informed me, and that I'd like to know how to proceed, what needs to be done, and if she'll help me through the process.
(3) Within 10 minutes she called me back (the PA) and said the next step would be to consult with the surgical team (who handles everything beyond those initial mammograms and ultrasounds). And that's where we'd discuss procedure options.
(4) Almost immediately after that, the Dr. who did the biopsy called to see how I was feeling. (Really?) I told her I was doing "just peachy." She said she her PA informed her that my PCP has already informed me of the results. She immediately said that she will stay on the phone with me as long as I needed her to, and she would answer any questions I have.
She said that the next step would be at the surgical center at the Breast Health Center. She said she would take care of everything and call the office, and have them call me to schedule a consult. In addition, she said that they would need to do a "bilateral MRI" because while the mass in the right breast was very obvious, even with the mammo they did Monday, they could not officially rule out the presence of CA in the left breast. This MRI would both confirm the mass they biopsied, and it would confirm or rule out the presence of any "suspicious mass" (CA I guess or otherwise) in the left breast, so they can be as thorough as possible.
She then stated that (regardless of options), they would have to perform a lumpectomy to remove the mass to determine what Stage the cancer is at. I got the impression the biopsies merely confirmed the presence, but not the progression, especially since they had no previous mammo to compare with. But that part had to be done.
(5) Within 10 minutes I got a call from the surgical center and they booked an appointment for me the soonest they could get me in, which was Friday Nov 15 at 3:00pm. She repeated with the PA and DR said about what to expect with the diagnostics, and at THAT time, the surgeon will discuss what Stage this is at, and what my options are.
To be honest, I am very thankful they told me over the phone. They all followed up so thoroughly and unbelievably swiftly to stay in touch with me, asking if I needed anything, if I was okay to be alone, always checking in with me.
So,....that's my story. That's what happened, pretty much word for word I guess, but that was the process.
EDIT: Esp to Vickie,....I'm not sure if they don't know or are withholding the Stage information because they have no clear consensus on what may or may not be going in the left breast, and they don't know how far it's spread yet. I'm just guessing because to be honest, my brain feels like a pile of mush right now, so I may not really be remembering everything too accurately.
Post Edited (Merrida) : 11/8/2013 1:33:22 PM (GMT-7)