Posts Tagged ‘biopsy’

Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire!

Today was Biopsy Day. I’m recording this, not because I am afraid I will be diagnosed with the dreaded breast cancer, but because I think women should know. And men who are married to women or in a relationship with a woman or have a woman in their life that they care dearly about.

First, they did a second ultrasound so they could mark my left breast for the incision. Promised me that I would be injected with lidocaine and that would be the worst of it. I know all about lidocaine and the pain of that injection. Definitely was not looking forward to that injection. I have been to the dentist too many times in my life to even think it wouldn’t be painless (and dentists use lidocaine’s cousin, novocaine). Besides, all of this entails a very large needle inserted into my body.

I do not do needles. I close my eyes at the dentist’s office and I turn my head when they draw blood at the doctor’s office. I cringe when I get a vaccination. The only Vax I ever got that didn’t hurt was Covid #1 and Covid #2. True story. I didn’t even bleed either time which befuddled the paramedic giving them out who was ready to put a bandage on the injection site. No blood, no mark.

Otherwise I bruise and turn purple. It’s just a fact. You mention the word “bruise” in a medical office and my skin immediately turns purple.

They mentioned the word “bruise” today. I haven’t been able to peek under the bandage, but I’m pretty certain I turned purple.

All the prep went well, we were on schedule, the radiologist was a pleasant person, and then came the big needle. Oh – did I mention the ultrasound imaging was right in front of my face so I could watch the needle being inserted into the fattty tissue? And that I don’t do needles? There it was, in front of my nose, long and silvery, and then came the sting of lidocaine. And more. And more.

I neglected to advise the radiologist that I usually need extra novocaine when I have the dentist work on a cavity in my teeth. OOPS.

That first biopsy was a searing fire-hit needle into my breast and beyond. My eyes watered. I almost cried out. I certainly gripped the handles of the guerny. DAMN! So – more lidocaine. But not enough. SHIT! More lidocaine. Third times the charm.

BUT – during the pre-biopsy ultrasound, they discovered another “suspicious” mass they wanted to biopsy. “Not a real concern, but we’d have to monitor it every six months…” and my brain screamed: you mean the smash-smash-smoosh-smoosh EVERY SIX MONTHS?!” Nope, nope, nope. I just went over fifteen years since the last one and now I’m being subjected to more torture. NO. Biopsy the bastard.

So the first needle went in and it stung like a bee sting. I lied and said I felt nothing. JUST GET IT OVER. The second needle hit my nerves like a yellow jacket with purpose. My breast will never be the same. The third shot… well, the numbing medication went into effect and I felt nothing. Heavy sigh.

But- but, but, but – they aren’t finished yet. Because now there is a “light pressure” mammogram on the plate to make certain the little metal markers inserted are where they need to be.

Oh, did I fail to mention that part? They insert little metal markers with cute little names into the position of the suspicious mass so they know what they biopsied. Site A gets one marker and site B gets another marker. They are different shapes. Site A has an oval marker and site B has what they names “infinity” but it isn’t actually an infinity symbol. Someone flunked math. It’s more of a corkscrew and I would have named it the “Wine Marker”.

The light pressure mammogram was exactly that: at least they didn’t lie about that. But I had to wait with a little sticky ice pack on my breast while the radiologist reviewed my files. Can’t risk swelling.

I am home now. Ice on every 20 minutes and off every 20 minutes. I can feel the incision and the path of the needles through my fatty tissue. Can’t remove the bloody bandages for 76 hours. No lifting, no planting flowers in the garden during these exceptionally warm April days, and sit still. I’m excited.

I get the results in two to three business days (Tuesday or Wednesday next week). I’m leaning toward they will be benign and all this hoopla will be for nothing because that is my medical history: all panic in the foreground and nothing to worry about after the tests are done. I hope this for every woman (or man) who has to undergo this kind of scrutiny/injections/biopsies.

I will post updates next week. Until then, scrunch up your battle face and do the mammogram. ‘Kay?

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