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Lump in breast: when to tell work?

(15 Posts)
KateME13 Wed 27-Jul-16 12:21:07

Hi this is my first post on mumsnet... I and 43 with 2 children (DD 10, DS 8) and have found a fairly big lump in my left breast--first saw it in the mirror when I raised my arm. Absolutely terrified--my mum's mum had ovarian cancer. Saw the doc this morning who is going to refer me to a breast clinic, hopefully before I go on holiday for a fortnight from 06.08. I am very preoccupied about it, but am supposed to be working (I work full time from home). When should I tell work do you think? I cannot concentrate on anything. I know keeping busy is the best approach, but at the moment I cannot focus on much past making the next cup of tea. I also wonder whether I should be going on holiday. I asked the doc who said 2 weeks wouldn't make a great deal of difference even in the worst case. Any advice and/or support would be very welcome: I have a supportive husband, but parents dies many years ago, so all feels quite scary.

DragonRojo Wed 27-Jul-16 12:25:01

A breast clinic for a fortnight? Are you sure you understood properly? I have been referred many times, but usually just go for an afternoon, they take samples, do checks and you go home until the results come back

JudyCoolibar Wed 27-Jul-16 12:30:43

I think the holiday is for a fortnight, not the clinic.

artlessflirt Wed 27-Jul-16 12:43:07

I could have written this but for the age!

I'm 25 and found a lump in my left breast at the weekend. I don't work from home, so told my manager when I was going to the doctor's appointment. I, too, have been referred to the clinic - and I'm going on holiday on 6th August!

I would tell work sooner rather than later - is there someone like a line manager that you feel comfortable talking to? I think keeping busy with work is good, but it's so difficult especially if you think about the 'what ifs' for too long.

Not much in the way of practical advice, but I'm right here with you if you need a hand to hold.

KateME13 Wed 27-Jul-16 12:48:46

Hi sorry DragonRojo--bad drafting. I meant a 2 week holiday. Thanks artlessflirt--it does help to hold a virtual hand. I think I will wait to get the appt through and then tell my manager. Right here for you too. All feels a but surreal at the moment.

MeMySonAndl Wed 27-Jul-16 12:53:30

You don't tell work at all until it is confirmed that further procedures are needed.

Being referred to the breast clinic for a mammography is no big deal and will not require you to take more than a couple of hours off (pretty much as if you were going to the dentist).

Bear in mind that even if the lump is big, it may still be benign which means it can be removed without dramatic procedures.

Please try not to panic too son (I know very well that it is easy to get too worried and yet the problem be a simple one at the end).

The only thing I would say is that if you get the appointment for when you are in holidays, do _NOT_postpone it. (You may ring the number in your appointment letter and ask them to put you in the waiting list for any cancellation in the hope of having the appointment before you go, it is sometimes easy to get one if you say you will be willing to attend even at a very short notice)

DragonRojo Wed 27-Jul-16 12:54:11

Try not to worry. I know it is easily said, but I have been at least 6 times and they've always been lumps filled with "water". I hope yours is the same

KateME13 Wed 27-Jul-16 15:12:25

Thanks everyone. Isn't mumsnet a marvel? Thanks so much.

KateME13 Mon 22-Aug-16 17:47:41

Hi I'm not sure whether to carry on on this thread, or start another but anyway: so I'm back from 2 weeks away during which I managed to keep anxiety pretty much under control, apart from one fairly major melt down late one night after too much wine... I had a letter waiting for me on return from holiday, an appointment at the the Breast Surgery outpatient clinic for 30.08. Biopsy was 04.08. I had hoped I'd get the results this week, but when I phoned to find out if it might be possible to move the appt to earlier, was told the Consultant was on hols til next week. So, the anxiety continues, and I am reading all sorts into the fact the letter says it's a 'Breast surgery' appt: my husband thinks it's not significant, as that was the clinic where the original referral was made. The anxiety is tidal--sometimes calm, sometimes great crashing waves. Any words of wisdom from wise mumsnetters would be appreciated. Thanks.

lljkk Mon 22-Aug-16 17:53:31

Would it help if you tell yourself these things:

Most pre-menopausal lumps are harmless.
It's really no good worrying about things you can't change.
You have good quality of life & a lovely family now -- don't waste the time you have with them now. You could be knocked over by a bus tomorrow.

Hang in there. x

SeasonalVag Mon 22-Aug-16 17:56:08

I feel for you, a month is a long time to be so concerned. Hope all is OK

StrongBelwas Mon 22-Aug-16 17:57:08

If you're really worrying there's nothing to stop you asking your GP for advice. I've done it before when I'm waiting for a hospital appointment.

NavyandWhite Mon 22-Aug-16 20:50:16

Waiting is always the worst thing.
Did you have a mammogram and ultrasound?

SquidgeyMidgey Mon 22-Aug-16 21:21:34

I've had a succession of benign lumps and my biopsy results letters were all for the breast surgery clinic. They see everyone, regardless of results, in the one clinic for the sake of expediency. I know it's hard but try not to worry, if they'd found something bad you'd likely have been called in already flowers

KateME13 Fri 23-Sep-16 16:54:16

Hi just thought I'd follow up on here with what's happened, in case it's helpful to anyone else. Finally got the results of the biopsy on 30.08: it's not cancer, but it is an atypical fibroadoema (but benign), so they need to take it out in case it's something called a phyllodes tumour. They cannot say whether it is or not unless they remove it. So I am now waiting for an op (day surgery): 5 week wait. If it is a phyllodes tumour they will need to have me in every year for monitoring, as apparently they can recur, and sometimes malignantly. I believe they also increase the risk of the possibility of BC. Thanks to everyone who offered comfort and advice on these pages. xx

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