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posted by MysteriousPancake
30 April 2024

How commonly are second opinions needed for skin biopsies?

Last reply: 01 May 2024 16:35
How common is it to wait up to 4 months for results and be told that biopsy needs a second opinion? I had a mole excision 8 weeks ago in a public hospital through a private dermatologist referral, was told I'd get my results 2-6 weeks by post. Its been 8 weeks and after getting my dermatologist office to chase my results I find out that the hospital refuses to release my results to them or to my gp. I finally got in contact with the hospital and they sent me an email saying that they didn't find evidence of cancer but are sending my biopsy for further opinion to confirm which might take up to 2 months more of waiting, so it'll be around 4 months in total. Is this normal?
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posted by Eve1234
30 April 2024

Scalp Cooling

Last reply: 05 May 2024 18:36
Hi All, I wanted to share my experiences of scalp cooling in the hope that it helps other people. I am just completing chemotherapy 12 rounds of Carbo Taxol and 4 rounds AC for breast cancer in a private hospital. Against the odds I have kept the vast majority of my hair. It gave me such freedom not to have to explain to people about my illness and kept things normal for my young kids. It has not been easy but it was worth it. Some words of advice. - It may not work so prepare yourself and get a wig and coverups etc. I felt happier that I had these should it not work for me. - Become the expert. Don’t assume that oncology ward staff are the experts. I had nurses who didn’t even know how to turn on the machine. Read everything you can on https://coldcap.com - Know what cap size sits the most effectively on your head (tight but not uncomfortable) and insist on it each time. - Know much pre infusion and post infusion time you need the cap on based on your type of chemotherapy. Don’t ever allow staff to reduce this time! You need every minute. - You will need to be your own advocate. Right from the beginning the attitude from oncology staff was negative. Whether this was from being too busy, indifference or where they’ve seen not working. I had nurses discuss opening how it wouldn’t work for me (it did!) and say to me how they hated the process. I was made to feel like it was an inconvenience so there may be sessions where you have to be a little pushy! - Practical tips Buy a silk pillowcase, use a soft baby brush to brush your hair, wash your hair only once a week with Simple shampoo. Dry your hair naturally or on a cold setting. Before putting on the cold cap use a water spray bottle to wet your hair (can be really difficult to wet your hair properly in those tiny toilet sinks!) Once wet brush conditioner through it then put on a hair band to protect your forehead - I got my hair cut twice during the 6 months. I just asked my hairdresser to be super gentle and not use hot hair dryer. - Even if it works you may still shred a lot of hair and this can be the most difficult time but persevere. Best of luck
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posted by MicheleC
25 April 2024

Waiting on results

Last reply: 21 June 2024 16:36
Hi, I am out of my mind with worry. I am 58 years of age and only went for my first mammogram on March 21st. I have a history of childhood abuse and lots of body issues so I kept delaying it and the Covid etc, anyway I got recalled last Monday 22nd, I had the mammogram and the nurse said there were calcifications on both breast and they needed to look a bit more. Then I had an ultrasound, the doctor said 'we need to do a bit more investigation' and said she could see a shadow somewhere on my left breast. I've no lumps or symptoms. She then said she would like to biopsy both the shadow and the calcification and did I want to do them that day or come back another day. I opted to have them done there and then. I then seen the breast nurse who gave me an appointment for next Wed 1st for the results. I was in bits and very upset etc and since then cannot sleep or focus either at work or at home. I've never, ever been so terrified in my life and am having panic attacks. I need some tips to calm down before Wed. Thank you x
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posted by jelly89
25 April 2024

Waiting for Biopsy Results

Last reply: 25 April 2024 14:51
I found a breast lump a few months ago. I just assumed it was a cyst as my mother had suffered from them and the lump is very round, smooth and movable. I finally got around to seeing my gp who advised that I shouldn't worry and was referred to a private hospital. I didn't get an appointment for 5 weeks so I assumed it was not urgent. I had a mammogram/ ultrasound/ biopsy yesterday. The lump is over 5cm. It is not a cyst. It is solid and has vascularity. It is very round & very movable. The ultrasound tech felt that my lymph nodes were clear. They seemed interested in some small areas of calcification under and maybe in the lump. Is vascularity in a lump an indicator that it is probably malignant? I saw the consultant afterwards and she didn't give me any indications! I'm due back to her for results in 8 days. Is this quick? I'm going crazy thinking about it and all the scenarios ahead of me.
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posted by corsa
18 April 2024

Zoladex hormone injection stopped after 9 yrs

Last reply: 19 April 2024 15:48
Hi 👋, I vaguely remember setting up a profile on this site in 2014 when 1st diagnosed age 37yrs with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer & here I am thankfully living life to the full almost 10yrs later. While I have remained on 3wkly IV treatment all this time, I am so grateful to be in remission. Small setback 4 yrs ago when heart was affected by herceptin & now cardiology patient too but all is under control. Latest change was start of Feb when I stopped zoladex 3.6 monthly injection due to severe cramps/muscle spasms in legs/abdomen causing me to pass out & since then I've waiting to see what happens as my reproductive system is shaken up ...am I in menopause or was I already in menopause after initial 6 mth chemo treatment taxol/AC . A week ago I suffered bad lower abdominal pain & attended out of hrs doctor who gave me antibiotocs/pain killers for UTI infection but now infection has cleared & pain remains so possibly reproductive system awakening.... would love to hear from anyone else who was on zoladex injection long term & any side effects they had after stopping it. Ive had the odd nite of hot flushes but more concernee about recent abdonima pain. Oncology where I attend are aware & will discuss at next meeting.
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posted by pamela anne
18 April 2024

Stage 4 pancreatic and liver cancer

Last reply: 19 April 2024 15:50
Hi my husband has stage four nets pancreatic and liver cancer. He was diagnosed in Jan 2021 We were told in December that the liver tumour is growing and he has been on chemo for the last 3months. I work full time but am thinking I need to go part time or take time off as he is getting weak and tired but financially this will be hard as he had to take early retirement last year because of his illness . I am quiet overwhelmed with everything but don’t want to worry him . My question is who are the best people to talk to about this .I am 59 and my husband is now 58
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posted by Daiz
17 April 2024

Triple assessment

Last reply: 23 April 2024 12:16
I have a triple assessment next week. I was in with the consultant this week, the lump I have is large and they said the lymph nodes on that side feel swollen too. The assessment feels like it is months away rather than days! My mind keeps thinking the worse, I'm usually a very positive person. I'm trying so hard to keep it together at home and in work! I need some words of wisdom to get me through the next few days/weeks! Thank you in advance. x
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posted by libbymc44
15 April 2024

now live abroad but travelling to Ireland

Last reply: 17 April 2024 20:12
Hi, I live in Spain now and my prescription for Zoladex is from Spain. I need to travel to Ireland at the beginning of May but my Zoladex injection is due when I plan to be there. I have called 2 GP centres and no help and said can´t help me at all. So now I am stuck with not being able to travel or administering it myself which I don´t feel comfortable doing as it is a depot injection. Would you have any advice on this. In Spain, once you have a oncology letter, prescription and the medication any nurse can administer it. Thanks in advance
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posted by mariem
12 April 2024

Tamoxifen

Last reply: 15 April 2024 16:30
Hi, I was wondering is it possible to develop tamoxifen side effects after 16 months? I went through all the fun of hot flashes, aches, pains etc during the first few months but they thankfully stopped after 4 months and my period also returned around then after it stopped during chemo for about 7 months. However I have developed very excessive discharge in the last 4 months. GP has ruled out all infections/stds. I have been referred to a gynaecologist but I believe this appointment will not arrive for many months. So I was just wondering if anyone has experienced anything similar? Many thanks x
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posted by Nonie59
09 April 2024

Polyps found in colonoscopy

Last reply: 10 April 2024 11:39
I had 13 polyps found at my colonoscopy yesterday. I’m very worried they could be cancerous considering the amount found. Has anybody had a lot of polyps removed and found that they were benign?
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