Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Good times and bad times - Pt1.

I've been a bad blogger recently. I have been doing endless amounts if blogworthy things, but do I post about them? Nope...basically I've been too busy doing to have much time or energy left to blog. Oh well...

However, there have been a few things lately which are compulsory blog fodder. Woolfest, the allotment, recent meetups, recent acquisitions and yup, some bad times. So let's do that one first.

I turned 50 last year so am now old enough to be called in for routine screening mammograms under the national breast screening programm. Everyone seems to have a horror story about these so I was not looking forwards AT ALL to this when I got an appointment for three weeks ago, because I've got big boobs and couldn't quite imagine how the squashing bit was going to take place without much pain. Well, it was fine. FINE. It did not hurt. Bit weird, but no pain.

The pain arrived two weeks later when I got a recall letter. They don't tell you why in a letter, obviously, apart from that you have something that needs double checked and that 7 out of 8 women don't need anything more than a second check. Which leaves the other 1 out of 8, obviously. My appointment was six days from the receipt of the letter and yes, I was worried.

Anyway I was there at 9am on Monday and yes, the mammogram showed I had a lump in my right boob. Tiny lump the size of a pea that even the doctor couldn't find manually but it was there. More mammograms, and an ultrasound. Then yet more mammograms because Pea was sneaky and kept wriggling off screen. A lot of waiting around....

Finally the verdict. The doctors are 99% sure it's a benign calcification. Nice word that, benign! However they decided to do a needle punch biopsy to confirm the diagnosis 100%, which was fine by me too. In half an hour or in two days? I went for the half-hour option.

I'm not saying this hurt either. Lets just say that being clamped into the mammogram scanner and told to stay Absolutely Still for nearly thirty minutes is the kind of experience that I don't want to repeat in a hurry. At the time, it was fine, if boring. But two days on I still feel stiff and achy and I have a really sore neck, ouch. I want to say again though for the benefit of anyone going for this procedure...it DID NOT hurt. The bit that did hurt was when they rotated part of the machine and my thumb got caught in it, but that was my own stupid fault, lol.

Anyway, the doctors are happy to let me go off to Amsterdam next Monday for three wweks. They're happy to give me the biopsy results over the phone. They used the expression "confirm the benign diagnosis". They said "99% sure". I know the way oncologists tell you things and the words they use to qualify themselves every second sentence. I'm happy..well, 99% happy!

Normal service will resume tomorrow, or even perhaps tonight if I get the photos crunched down to blogging size. I never did show you the things I got from Woolfest, did I?

Oh, and go for your mammograms when it's your turn, ladies. It's less bother than a smear by a long way, and given that breast cancer is a lot more common than cervical cancer well, it would be daft not to go, surely?

6 comments:

ambermoggie said...

Glad it went ok , like you I recognise doctor speak and sounds good to me. I know when Mr Mog was having his op and radiotherapy I learnt to translate what they said.
Enjoy Amsterdam
ps word verification was trails:)

Rosie said...

What a nasty fright the recall must have been. So glad to hear that all is well.

Enjoy Amsterdam and looking forward to hearing more about your Woolfest swag.

alke said...

You're coming over HERE for a vacation?! Great!
mail me!

Knitlass said...

Good to hear you are 99% okay! I've had a mammogram too, and it didnt hurt, and like you the staying still for my lump (galactocele) to be aspirated was uncomfortable but not painful.
Have fun in NL - and hurry up with those photos, I'm dying to see your allotment again...

birdwoman said...

Glad you're 99% ok! Enjoy your holiday.

KSee said...

I remember when I received my letter for a call back. Those days waiting are pure h*ll. You say there is nothing wrong, then you wonder what is is going to take to plan to get your affairs in order. You do not say a word to anyone. For me it is always fatty tissue. Dense boobs. So now if they ask for a come back it has happen twice, I just tell them what it is. Take time off from work and yup, dense breasts. We do not have the 'C' in my family. Just benign things.

Oh, how I would love to go to Amsterdam. Oh, how I would love to go to your town.