Quarterly update (part 2) – talking about my mammogram

Okay, in the last post, I made it through talking about when Justin’s family is leaving and talking about Jessi’s graduation. Today, I’m going to talk about my boobs a lot, so if that makes you uncomfortable, come back another day.


Okay, the Friday before graduation, I had a mammogram. I went in for my yearly physical a few weeks ago and while I was there, I mentioned to my doctor (she’s a PA, but I call her my doctor anyway) that I’d found a lump . . . in the place where lots of women find problematic lumps. (Are we all women reading? I’m not sure. I’ll be delicate-ish.) I was concerned, but not “Oh my gosh I’m going to die of cancer” because it HURT. I mean, it woke me up from a dead sleep like someone had stabbed me in the chest and it had been throbby-achy since then. And from what I’d been reading, if it’s cancer, it doesn’t hurt. So, yea! probably not cancer, but not yea! because it hurt. Anyway, she examined it and said I should get a mammogram to get a better idea of what was going on.

I went through a whole heap of trouble to make sure that the place I went was actually covered by my insurance, and got an appointment to go in. I was covered for a mammogram and an ultrasound and got my pre-authorization for a biopsy, if one was needed. Which we all hoped wouldn’t be necessary.

I won’t go into too much detail about the whole hows of the appointment (if you’re curious, call me and I’ll tell you all about it), but the gist of it is that they did end up doing both the mammogram and the ultrasound because that sucker is about the size of a ping-pong ball, and the mammogram tech, after saying “Oh, gosh! I can feel that!” said that they usually do want to ultrasound something that size, and she was right.

The ultrasound tech, after reassuring me that it’s really not that big compared to other problematic lumps she’s seen, told me that it’s a cyst. I have what’s called fibrocystic breasts, but I already kind of knew that. Back when I was in Toccoa, the doctor I was seeing there was concerned about what the doctor here called “lumpy bumpy breasts” and had me get a mammogram. It came back normal then, too. I just have lumpy boobs. But this is the first time that they actually got all angry and flared up.

So it’s nothing to be terribly concerned about. The doctor who looked over my ultrasound emphasized that I really absolutely must do breast exams every month and this scared me enough that I’m absolutely going to do that. I’ve always been kind of “Eh, it’s been a while, better check.” But I’m going to get regular on those because it was really scary not knowing for sure if I should be more concerned.

I’m still waiting to see if this cyst is going to calm down or if I’m going to need to do something about it. The doctor said that it’s got about 33% chance of staying the same, getting worse, or going away. So now I’m waiting to see if I want to go in and have it drained or if it’ll go away on it’s own.

So yeah. There’s that. Do regular self exams, everybody. They’re important.