In Tuesday’s post, Fear In 3D, I wrote about the trepidation I felt in regard to my next day’s mammogram, my first in five years. The actual test was easy and painless.
I was going to document the events that followed the day after, but wanted this post to be more informative rather than a record of the pure, unadulterated fear and panic my husband and I experienced. I had been told by the technician that a radiologist would review my images the next day and I could expect a letter in the mail in a few weeks and a call from my family doctor. If they needed me to come back for further testing, they would let me know. And that they did.
I had some irregular tissue in my right breast and I needed an ultrasound. They had an opening for that afternoon and I took it. What they saw turned out to be a lymph node that showed as a tiny speck on my last, long ago mammogram. The new 3D technology made this previous dot stand out, as if it was holding a giant red flag.
But here’s what I want you to know in case you don’t. As I didn’t. But now I do. And now you know too.
The need for an ultrasound after a mammogram is very, very common. The ultrasound is a way to get another look at something found during a mammogram. Think if it as due diligence.
The American Cancer Society says that “less than 10% of women called back (after a mammogram) for more tests are found to have breast cancer”. Click here for the full article.
I will go back in six months for a follow-up mammogram of just this breast. There will be no more putting it off. And there will be no more panic should I get a call for further testing. OK, I can’t promise no panic, but it definitely will be reduced.
Go get a mammogram. Even if you’re scared. Take it one step at a time should additional testing be required. Take a friend with you, someone who has had to have more testing. It won’t be hard to find that person, it happens all the time. You can do it. You must do it. Don’t let it fo Luke I did. That only exacerbates any fear you may have. Don’t I know it.
And now you know too.