Mumsnet hasn't checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you have medical concerns, please seek medical attention; if you think your problem could be acute, do so immediately. Even qualified doctors can't diagnose over the internet, so do bear that in mind when seeking or giving advice.
This is a Premium feature
To use this feature subscribe to Mumsnet Premium - get first access to new features see fewer ads, and support Mumsnet.Start using Mumsnet Premium
Breast lump(57 Posts)
Hi everyone. This is my first post. I'm 44 years old and a single parent to 3. My son has just turned 22, I have a 20 year old daughter and a 14 year old daughter. Last Monday evening, the 13th January, the day before my sons birthday, I found a lump in my right breast. I don't check my breasts as often as I should but it scared the life out of me. My blood ran could and I had a panic attack. After a sleepless night I rang my GP surgery the next day and managed to get to see a locum GP at 10.30 that morning. She did an examination then gave me an two week urgent referral to the breast clinic. I received the appointment on Thursday for the 27th, a week tomorrow but I'm in a really dark place. I've convinced myself it's cancer. I keep feeling the lump in the vain hope it's disappeared, then this morning I decided to check myself naked in front of the mirror and have found large dimples in the underboob. I can't eat, sleep or concentrate on anything. I have a great supportive friend network who all message me daily and offer to come to the appointment next week. I feel like I'm facing a death sentence, I'm so scared x
I understand why you're feeling alarmed - I would too. It's where your brain goes straight away. But firstly you don't know anything yet and you need to stay away from horror stories on the internet and try to stay calm and be kind to yourself. Secondly, even if it was found to be cancer it is very survivable. I gave two friends who have successfully been treated and are still living happy and healthy lives. So try not to panic. And big hugs to you.
Hi, I’m sorry you’re going through this. It is a worry but try to remember that the majority of people who go to have their lumps checked out find out that they’re benign. I’ve had two such instances myself. The ‘urgent’ referral pathway is a standard procedure for all breast lumps. It doesn’t mean the login thought yours was any more serious.
You’ve done the right thing by getting it checked out. Do have a think about what sort of things could help to keep you calm while you’re waiting.
Thank you for your replies. I've googled pretty much every conceivable website on the internet! The lump is the size of half a cherry tomato, perfectly round and smooth but immovable. Have no idea how I'm going to get through the next week. Trying desperately to focus on other things but really struggling. X
Im753 There is a thread for those with cancer, but also for those like you who are waiting for tests and worried they might have cancer.
I know how scary it is and how your imagination wanders. I'm sure you know that googling isn't the best idea. I can tell you what will probably happen at your appointment if that's any help?
No GP will ever make a diagnosis on a breast lump. Whatever your age or however the lump feels they always refer to the breast clinic. Do take someone, I didn't and it was hard.
What happens at the breast clinic. It's a long appointment, maybe 3 hours, because they do lots of tests on the day and for some you get instant results.
Mine started with a mammogram.Then I saw the consultant who had the results in front of her. She examined me and drew marks on my breast. Then back to the waiting room. Then I had an ultrasound and a biopsy. Then back to the waiting room. Then I saw the consultant again who said that the results of the biopsy would be back in ten days.
The chances are that it's not cancer and you will get reassurance on the day. If they think it is they will warn you but it won't be confirmed on the day.
Hi I was in your place a couple of weeks ago but was thankfully seen at the breast clinic within 4 days and got the all clear. Chatting to the lovely doctor at the clinic he said there are loads of types of breast lumps.. fatty lumps, fibrous lumps, hormonal lumps and cysts to name but a few and the vast majority are not cancerous so chances are that yours is not harmful. Try and take some comfort in knowing that you are getting it seen to and try to keep it together until your appointment, easier said then done. Good luck
I have been through this - and so have two of my DDs - all were finally diagnosed as cysts. I panicked and thought the worst. The speedy referral is part of the system that GPs are obliged to trigger - it does not mean that you have cancer; but does mean that you will get a speedy diagnosis either way.
I fully understand how disturbing this is and I know that nothing will stop you thinking the worst. I was a bit of a wreck during the wait - so I am holding your hand.
I have been there too. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006. The treatment is doable and it isn’t a death sentence. A smooth lump sounds like a cyst anyway but if it isn’t you will get rapid treatment. All will be well. Good Luck 🍀
Thank you so much everyone for your comments. Thank you for the insight into the appointment too. 2 weeks doesn't sound like a long time but when you are in turmoil, every hour feels like a day. I'm afraid I'm going to cry with fear all through the appointment. I suffer with anxiety anyway so I'm struggling with this wait. Thank you all so much though. Feels like I'm not alone when I have nobody physically around me xx
I’ve had 2 lumps investigated.1 aged 37- was smooth, firm and rubbery. Was a fibroadenoma. It gradually shrunk and now 12 years later is about a third of the size.
The second was 2 years ago. Was smooth but irregular shaped though a bit mobile- was a cyst which was drained at the hospital. Never check your boobs in the week before your period. My cyst had slightly reduced by the time my appointment came through which helped.
Good luck. Remember 9/10 lumps are benign. Do report back if you can. I know I searched so many old threads for comfort and it really helped when people came back to say the outcome.
Thank you your message. It's reassuring to hear that many of you have been through it and the lumps turn out to be benign and even if they are cancerous, there seems to be a lot of positivity! Just need to get through this week. I'm usually a positive person but I'm too scared to be positive so just taking things day for day xx
I was a nightmare. Lost weight as couldn’t eat through worry so I know exactly how you feel. I also convinced myself that doctor’s facial expressions were bad and I must have cancer. It’s natural so take it easy on yourself, whatever it takes to get you through the next week.
When I saw the GP last Tuesday, just after she examined me, she left me behind the curtain to get dressed and as she washed her hands she sighed. I'm sure it was nothing but it's been playing on my mind. Like you, next Monday I will be observing the doctors facial expressions. The wait is awful. There really should be a quicker turnaround. I know I'm the grand scheme of things it's relatively short, but when you're agonising day and night it can seem like a lifetime xx
Cammomile tea, rescue remedy and diazepam and mumsnet got me through the wait, although i cried through the whole appointment. Everyone was lovely and so kind. It was funny, my DP was miffed because the consultant literally spoke to me in baby language. I have a PhD in a medically related field but i am eternally grateful to that consultant, she knew I was terrified and just needed someone to tell me it was ok. I just sat there with tears rolling down my face.
My lump was a cyst and they drained it there and then. The nurse held my hand.
The wait was torture but i felt like I was ok from the minute i walked into the clinic. They know what they are doing.
The odds are in your favour xx
Ah that's reassuring. What did your lump feel like? Sorry to ask. I am a ore reg pharmacy tech so know where to find all the nice guidelines etc. Sometimes that's more of a hindrance to bough. Have no idea what state I'm going to be in this time next week. Xx
Yep the gp felt mine, said hmmmm then went behind the curtain. No reassurance given. The nurse chaperone offered to check both breasts after and she said it was slightly mobile and was more positive. I think women just know and read your feelings better.
Yes Gp was a she. The only positive thing she told me was out of 100 people referred to breast clinics, 92% are not cancerous. It's not a lot to go on xx
It’s a daily thing for her. For us it’s monumental.
She did say it's not like a chest infection where she could listen to someone's chest and diagnose, that's why it needed to be referred. Xx
It’s horribly scary, but most are the gazillion things our boobs grow just for shits and giggles.
I’ve had: fibroadenoma, cyst, microcalcifications, haematoma and most recently an abscess! I don’t get particularly bothered by it now (a bit too not bothered as far as checking goes). The one-stop clinics are very good, if long. Good luck, hang in there.
Aw thank you. You made me laugh then! Well you've all given me reassurance. Going to buy some rescue remedy and chamomile tea tomorrow to keep me going xx