Tuesday, December 16, 2008

stereotactic breast biopsy

The U.S. Institute of Medicine found that only about 60 percent of the women old enough to need regular mammograms get them.

Stereotactic breast biopsy takes calcifications and breast breast tissue to be studied under a microscope. This procedure uses x-rays to find the tissue to be removed. It may prevent the need for an open (surgical) biopsy.

The breast is pressed between two flat plates and a low-dose x-ray is taken. The x-ray helps find the exact tissue to be sampled. A needle is then guided to the biopsy area and removes several tiny samples of breast tissue. After the needle is removed, a small bandage is placed on the skin.

For my biopsy, they actually gave up because my calcifications would move everytime they tried to grab 'em. They would target the area and then not get what they were going after. They did get tissue and will see what the pathogist reports but I'll likely have to have a surgical biopsy. I may hear something from Dr. Placentra, my regular Doc, by Friday.
Wake Forest University Baptist is almost two hours one way, I've been down there 3 times now since Dec 2nd and sounds like I'll have to go back again.
COMPLAINT - They did inject some numbing stuff but it wasn't nearly enough, and I had to keep hollering for more. Why didn't they hit me up big time and then go at it? They couldn't get what they were going after and kept jabbing and jabbing, which I didn't want to interupt them but dang, knock out the feeling in that breast first! They were working high, near the armpit so maybe that had something to do with it. That jabbinging went on for over an hour. The doctor told me that this biopsy was very unusual (I'm thinking, of course, I'd be in the unusual category).
My outlook has been very good until enduring all that discomfort and it sounded like it was a waste of time. Unlike the photo above, they had me facing the wall, I could hear voices but could not see anything. They were very polite but they were frustrated too. I think two Drs, a resident, and radiologist assistant were in the room.
I'm feeling fine now at home but just a long day. Mike drove me down today, we stopped at a cafeteria near the hospital and got home at 7:00PM.
2008 sure has been a medical adventure for me, my ins company wishes I'd fall off a cliff.

15 comments:

Deb said...

What a miserable experience Joanna - you would think they could have made you much more comfortable.
Glad you are home and feeling better. Take good care of yourself.

Twisted Fencepost said...

I am sorry that was such a terrible experience. I hope you never have to go through that again. And I hope the tissue sample comes back with a good report!!

Teesa and Bill said...

I wondered about you two today when I saw only one truck was home. Sorry to hear you had such a bad experience - you'd think they'd want to make it a little more pleasant to encourage more women to get mammograms.

If you need anything at all - I'm your woman. Just let me know. You've been on my mind all day and now I know why - I've prayed for you a couple times today already. I will continue to.

sugarcreekstuff said...

You poor thing. If a dentist can make a visit pain free, you'd think medical doctors could do the same.

Joanna said...

Thank you, I didn't want to imply that it was a terrible experience, the staff was trying to be very polite, I just meant to say it was much more involved that I was expecting. The doctors said that for most people it isn't that involved. I'm blogging about it, mammograms, because I think it is so important to go and do what is suggested afterwards.

Claire said...

Oh dear - I thought about you numerous times today and wondered how it went. Sorry to hear it was not as smooth as expected. Will be keeping you in my thoughts.

Shiloh Prairie Farm said...

I hate to hear you experienced so much discomfort and may have to go back. What a trooper you are to endure that long of them digging around, I don't think I would have been able too! I was hoping this would be easier for you. I hope the results are good and maybe they won't have to do more than that. I will keep you in my thoughts.

Jennifer

Amy - "Twelve Acres" said...

I hate it when procedures get complicated like that. I feel your frustration. You were a lot more patient than I would have been! Let's hope they get it next time and you won't have to suffer so much.

Christy said...

I'm sorry it was so uncomfortable! Seems a shame they didn't numb you more. I hope the results are all good.

farm mom said...

Oh, I'm so sorry you were in pain and discomfort. I sincerely hope you get good news after this.

Hot Belly Mama - taking it all back said...

Thank you so much for sharing this! This is something we all need to know.

But I am sorry it was miserable for you. Hopefully technology will bring better methods soon.

Wrensong Farm said...

I don't know why they tend to be so skimpy with the numbing stuff, it is really irritating!

I hope that tissue sample ends up being enough and it's nothing but good news. Take care.

JK said...

Ouch, sorry it didn't go smoothly for you.
Those things (mammograms) are not comfortable to start with.

KATE EVANS said...

Sounds like you should have just drunk a bottle of wine first! Ugh, these things are medeival. Our breasts should be cradled in feathers for such procedures. Thinking of you...keep us updated.

xoxox

Claire said...

Hey Joanna, I keep thinking about this post that you made, and wondering if you'd heard anything yet...I keep sending you good vibes.