Update On Mammogram Referral

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DENZIL88 | 10:57 Thu 07th Jul 2022 | Body & Soul
13 Answers
Thought I would update you all on my post a few weeks ago about my First Mammogram referral. Had Ultrasound and Biopsy done and results were Breast Cancer Estrogen Fed and possibly HER2 waiting on those results next Friday. Devastated and shocked as it was my first ever Mammogram age 51 - and no lump was felt it was well hidden in Dense Breast Tissue 2cm lump. They say it is treatable with 6 hour sessions of Chemo every 3 weeks for 4 months, and possibly a Lumpectomy but they may not have to do that if chemo works. I am so worried about how the Chemo will affect me. Luckily I am in good health, not overweight and never smoked. Any positive comments would be ever so grateful x


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Thanks for the update.
I will let others who have had personal experience of chemotherapy add their comments.
Question Author
I am convinced the HRT has caused it (18 months on it). Specialists say no. It has not spread to any lymph nodes they say, nor armpit. I will have to take Estrogen blockers for at least 5 years. So much to take in.
It is a lot to take in, but from what you say, your type of cancer is curable (I use that word in cancer terms.)
Sending you all my best wishes and lots of love xx
I'm so sorry the results were not what you hoped for, Denzil. I can't speak from any experience except that of friends and family who have been in the same position.
The chemo was tiring at times but the outcome for them has been good and successful.
From what you say about your health now you seem to be in a good place for things to go well.
Can't really say anything else other than to wish you well.....x
chin up Denzil
rates for survival are very good now a days and yours is just about as early as you can get ( and still have cancer).

A lorra people point at me and say - he had ca 1999. Long time ago.

Chemo for early ca is mild...
I have looked at what they use for you - - very very variable
you will have to ask your consultant.
Good luck
oh, and your attitudes change
when people say - Oh Mrs X said about you, and Mrs Y said..... and Mrs Z disapproved ...
you tend to think, so what, they dont have ca
Good luck with the Chemo.

I well know what impact such Damoclean events can have on your outlook having myself recently suffered a TIA (mini-stroke) which has resulted in driving ban and lifelong medication. But at 51 (I'm 79) it must be even more difficult to face an uncertain future, so you have my full sympathy. Your fine physiology will no doubt be a major influence in your overcoming this setback.

Wishing you all the best for a speedy recovery and resolution.
Hi Denzil, if I remember correctly, my sister had similar. She mentioned HER2. Her tiny lump was a bit bigger than yours. She was advised to have her one breast removed. As for the treatment, it was more or less same as yours. She coped very well, even though it was hard going at times. Medical team have lots of drugs to help, i.e. anti sickness drugs, they are very supportive and kind.
She went through this over 10 years ago at 54, and is doing fine. By the way, she was taking HRT about 18 months before..
All the very best to you, x

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Thank you all very much x
I've read all the other, knowledgeable, answers andit sound very positive to me. It's just terrific that this has been found so very early. You have everything going for you. All the best wishes - and I'm sure you will be fine. :)
Everyone's experiences of chemo are a bit different but, to try to put your mind at rest (because it almost certainly won't be anywhere near as bad as you think it might be), I'll copy and paste what I wrote on Chasingcars' thread about my own experiences. (She's in a fairly situation to you at the moment):

>>> The first thing to note though is that my chemo was for Stage 4 prostate cancer (that I'm still living with, as it's not completely curable), so there might be some differences when compared to treatment for Stage 1 breast cancer. I was told that I'd have 6 sessions at three-weekly intervals. (After I'd had 6 though, the consultant said that I could stop if I really wanted to but he'd rather that I tried for 10. Given that the chemo nurses had told me that it was totally impossible for anyone to get through more than 8 sessions at the mega-high dose that I was on, as people's bodies simply couldn't take it, I wasn't exactly pleased at the prospect of another 4 sessions but I got through them in the end).

The other thing to say is that everyone is different and two people having identical treatments might experience very different side effects. Having got that lot out of the way though, here's my input (which is based not only upon my own experiences but also upon those of other people that I spoke to during my chemo sessions):

If you have chemo you will, undoubtedly, experience some side effects. However don't allow yourself to be scared by the full list of possible side effects that you'll probably be given in a leaflet or booklet. You'll only have very few of them.

The one that probably worries people the most is nausea. (Nobody exactly relishes the thought of continually feeling sick for several months in a row). However, while a small percentage of people might be unlucky in that respect, most people seem to have very little, if any nausea at all. I didn't experience a single moment of queasiness throughout any of my sessions or after them. Further, you'll get anti-nausea treatment during your chemo session and anti-nausea drugs to take after them as well.

The only problems I had with my digestive tract were incredible heartburn (which was easily and fully treated with omeprazole) and severe constipation (which was fully dealt with by an over-the-counter product, Laxido, from my local pharmacy).

One 'almost certain' side effect of chemo is hair loss. Even so, the timing and extent can vary widely between patients. I had a lady friend who had chemo but didn't start to lose any hair until a few weeks after her treatments had ended (and she didn't lose very much of it). I, on the other hand, found that my hair was falling out just two or three days after my first session. Despite that, I still kept much of the hair that was left on my head anyway (as I have male pattern baldness), while losing hair from everywhere else on my body. (Getting on for two years after my chemo, I've still hardly got any eyebrows or eyelashes). During my chemo sessions, I met some fellow patients who still appeared to have a full head of hair, while others were totally bald, so it does vary quite a lot.

The other 'almost certain' side effect is tiredness. I certainly experienced plenty of that and most other people seemed to as well. I got through it easily enough though by simply sleeping whenever I wanted to, and for however long I felt like, which usually left me with plenty of energy during my waking hours.

As I was on a 'maximum dose' treatment, I also experienced a bit of 'chemo brain', leading to mild forgetfulness or confusion but I doubt very much that you'd have any similar problems.

The actual chemo sessions themselves are very easy. You simply sit in a nice comfy chair, wearing your normal clothes. After asking you a few questions, to check that they've got the right patient and to check up on how you've been faring since your previous session, the nurse puts a heated pad around one of your hands, to make it easy . . .
. . . to find a vein. A few minutes later she'll return to insert a canula into the back of your hand and attach a drip to it. Over the next few hours, the nurse will change the drip several times, as you receive the chemo, antibiotics and anti-nausea treatments, together with some 'flushes' in between them. However you can totally ignore that and get on with reading your book or newspaper, browsing the web on your phone or whatever else you choose to do while you're there. (One lady I knew got a great deal of knitting done during her chemo sessions!).

You'll probably be offered tea or coffee during your chemo sessions, possibly with some biscuits, so the whole thing is very relaxed indeed. You don't have to stay in your chair. If you want to go the the loo, for example, you can simply unplug the machine that's pumping drugs into you and make your way there with the wheeled stand that's holding your drip. (The machine has an internal battery, just like a laptop does, so it carries on doing its job when you unplug it).

At the end of my each session, you'll be given drugs to take for a few days afterwards. You might also be given, as I was, prefilled syringes to inject antibiotics into your stomach wall each day for the next five days. (If you've not had to self inject before, don't worry. It's nowhere near as hard as it sounds!).

You'll be told to avoid crowded places (such as lifts or busy Tube trains) for the next few days, as your immune system will be almost non-existent for a while. You'll also be given a card with a 24-hour phone number on it, to call if you experience any extremely rare but potentially serious side effects (which will be explained to you) or if you've got any other concerns at all about any side effects that you might suffer. Then you can go home and get on with your life!
My Mum was diagnosed with BC in 2010 at the age of 68 and was beyond a lumpectomy, she had a mastectomy. They said it was "treatable but incurable" at that stage, did lymph node tests and she started the first of a series of chemos. As one chemo stopped being effective, a new one came along, and another, and another ...etc.
From the point of her diagnosis, she assumed she had a life expectancy of two years ...she lasted nine.
There's always new stuff ...and hope.
All the best to you x

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