Yesterday, about midday, I remembered that I should call the clinic and book my biopsy back in.
There is no way I can get it done in Australia. While it might not be urgent because I am low risk of a positive result for cancer it is meant to be done within 6 months. The original scan was January and flights have been halted until at least the end of May. So, I can’t really get back there until June at the earliest, if flights do start running again. Why stress for months?
I called the specialists office, the lady who answered said I could just call the imaging place directly but after a second I was put on the phone to the lady who organised the refund. Appointment made. I managed to get a time, two-thirty. Two and a half hours from now.
Back to stressing about the actual test. I let Mum know the test was booked in. My message had a typo so she called me. I sent her a message saying ‘tear day today’ instead of ‘test today’. With the typo cleared up I think she succeeded in freaking me out more, she said – it isn’t a needle they use but left at that. I think she wasn’t meant to freak me out but she did.
Anyway, a 2-hour wait goest fast when you have to get there half an hour early and it takes half an hour to get there.
Triston was working from home and had meetings all afternoon but I asked if he could come with me.
I got changed because they say to wear a top and pants but when I got in they told me just to leave my undies on and take the rest off. Dress, top and pants, it wouldn’t have made a difference.
So, well. Ok. Ergh. I was not prepared for this.
I get changed into the robe and wait a little. I get called into the room and one technician finds the three spots again. The specialist is reviewing the old films.
They find the three, the specialist comes in, she asks for the 3 to be marked. She has a look with the ultrasound, they discuss some things. Then we get started.
She explains to me the process today. She says the lesion marked BIRADS-4A by the previous scan, looks to her to be a standard cyst. This is the single reason I am having a scan. They will take the biopsy anyway to rule out cancer as the initial scan thought it was a mixed tissue – cyst and other – but in taking the biopsy it will likely collapse.
Once it has collapsed it will be near impossible to find again so she will have to put a marker in the spot. This is so that on the off chance it is cancer they can find it again as they would never find it again otherwise. If it is not cancer it will stay forever. If it is, this is the guide to find it and it would be removed along with the cancer at a later stage.
She will anaesthetise first, cut, take the biopsy and move on to the next.
They leave and get all the tools and return. I have been marked up, cleaned up and I am warned the anaesthetic needle will hurt. Shit. Holy shit. It hurt much more than I thought. The incision is made pretty quick and then she asks if I feel any pain. I don’t, I say I don’t or that I am pretty sure I don’t and she lets me know it is working already because she has cut.
The biopsy needle comes out but I can’t really see what is happening because this is the lesion at the 3 o’clock and they are all set up on my right, so I am rolled over and tucked up. I did make eye contact with the ultrasound technician as the anaesthetic went in so I am kind of locked into staring at her soul now.
I am warned, there will be a snapping sound. Don’t move. I had this warning earlier but now we have the ultrasound, a cut, a biopsy needle all in a delicate balance so I need to remember.
A snap, a snap, you will hear a snap. I will hear a starting gun and have a needle punch through my boob is what I will hear. OMG. I jumped. I almost hit the roof. That was as contained as I could be. I apologised but I wasn’t expecting something so loud and violent. I thought it was a snapping sound that I would feel and thus hear not something I would literally get a fright from it was so loud.
Ok, phew, that is done. Two more I think. Nope. We are going to take 4 samples from this lesion and also place the marker. What, four, what, why, what. OMG. OMG. OMG.
So, spot one is done. Now onto the 8 o’clock spot. This is the small one that she fells is the most suspicious.
I think to myself how I am glad that the anaethestic is done. Oh, nope, it wasn’t a knock out of the whole boob, just that one spot. I will have the exact same process repeated twice more. Even though there is one at 8 o’clock and another at 9 o’clock. So close. So close that I would have thought just one more but no.
Again, the needle to numb the area is kind of intense, not as bad as that first one. That first one killed. It made the back of me knees sweat and I almost passed out. It hurt like a bitch. This one is kind of hurty and the the third was not too bad.
4 samples from this and 4 from the next. These two do not need a marker.
Finally it is over.
Oh. Oh nope. It isn’t.
I have to wait for about 15 minutes or so, even though the anaesthetic is going to start to wear off soon, she said it only lasts about an hour. I have to wait because I need a mammogram to make sure that the marker is in the right spot. I can’t go until that is confirmed as it might wander.
The sides of the bed I am on come up, they leave, I wait. Eventually I get the mammogram, there is pain. I can feel pain. It isn’t overwhelming but I want to be home before it is. One image straight on and two side on. Then I wait again. They need to review and make sure it is the right spot.
I wait with Triston in the waiting room. Not too much time passes before they let me know all is fine and I can now get dressed.
YAY! It is finally over.
3 business days for the results to be back and I will get a call to make the appointment with the referring specialist.
Now, it is bearable. It isn’t the worst thing I have been through. If you need one, get it done. I just wasn’t expecting what I got.