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“The Importance of Mammograms”

By Teri LaFaye c September 27, 2009


After a recent mammogram that came back abnormal, I became more and more convinced of how little I knew about breast cancer prevention. I underwent two mammograms and two ultrasounds with results by two different doctors requesting the same follow-up procedure for further diagnosis. On September the 14th, I had a biopsy performed on my right breast. The tissue in question was approximately 9 x 7 x 4 mm in size. It did not show up with a regular breast examination because it was located in very deep tissue. I have high density tissue in both breasts, and from what I have researched, this is a condition that tends to run in families and not really ‘prevented.’ Some people just have dense breast tissue. Upon going in for the procedure, I was both apprehensive and optimistic as to the outcome. I do not have a history of breast cancer in my family so that was good to know. The actual procedure was not bad at all. The doctor deadened the breast and then made an incision at the 7 o’clock position. A long slender tube resembling a straw with a scooped razor on the end was then inserted into my breast and the area was literally sucked out and shaved away. It went into a small vile and (to put it plainly) resembled the chicken yellow fat you see on a raw chicken. The biggest discomfort came afterward. I used iced for about 4 days on the area and still am tremendously bruised from the procedure. I have just now been able to go back into the gym without fear of damaging something or pulling something. The test results showed that the tissue in question was FIBROCYSTIC tissue which is benign (not cancer). Many studies have been done on fibrocystic breast disease and to say the word “disease” tends to stir up feelings of dark and gloomy outcomes. Actually, the word ‘CHANGE’ should clarify what ‘disease’ really means. The breast changes in texture and thickening in fibrocystic dense breasts. So, not only is it a common find, but it is also not threatening. I would strongly advice any women, and men for that matter, to get annual mammograms performed. The old saying about an ‘ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’ holds true. There are many good resources I found that explain the terminology of fibrocystic tissue. I have included some links for those interested. The most important thing to remember is that monthly breast exams are very important for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Do not be mislead into believing that breast cancer could not happen to you. You may wakeup sadly mistaken one day. Prevent finding out ‘too late’ by doing your monthly and annual exams. It could save your breast and your life. links for further information: Female Breast Fibrocystic breast disease Fibrocystic breast disease is a common and benign change within the breast characterized by a dense irregular and bumpy consistency in the breast tissue. Mammography or biopsy may be needed to rule out other disorders.


Sources for further information: Fibrocystic breast disease: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia Fibrocystic breast disease refers to benign (noncancerous) changes in the tissues of the breast. The term "disease" in this case is misleading, ...


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