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Monday, August 17, 2009 Kimberleygl, Community Member, asks

Q: Anyone told to wait 6 months after microcalcifications were found?

Hello. I just joined. Ten years ago my mother had a lump. It was removed and she had 5 weeks radiation. About a few weeks later she was bleeding from her nipple and her Dr. said it was the radiation leaving her body...don't worry. Luckily she got a second opinion. Ended up having pagets and had a mastectomy. TOUCH wood, she is 10 years cancer free :)   I had a mammogram in May 09. I was called back for a more detailed one on my left breast. They found microcalcifications. No biopsy etc was ordered. Even though they know my mom's BC history they said come back in 6 months for another mammogram. That will be in about 15 weeks now..time flies! Anyone told to wait? I know the percentages etc re microcalcifications to leading to BC and I am not a worrier. I am 53 years old.  

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Answers (2)
PJ Hamel, Health Guide
8/17/09 4:50pm

Yes, with microcalcifications, I think it's fine to wait. They're not cancer. They're a sign that cancer MIGHT be developing, if they cluster or form a pattern; so that's what the doctor will be looking for in 6 months. I hope you told your doctor about your mother's history? This would give him/her a heads-up that you need to be tracked more closely than most. Good luck - PJH 

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Kimberleygl, Community Member
8/17/09 4:58pm

Thank you for a fast reply. Yes, even before my first mammogram, they took my family history. The report after the closer mammogram had: "There is a small grouping of microcalcifications, one of which appears relatively coarse. The appearance is a low suspicion for maligancy." So I wait until end of November! I have not told my mother, two sisters or my son (21 years old) about it. Why worry them if it is nothing!

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PJ Hamel, Health Guide
8/17/09 8:51pm

So, wait and see... yes, it's hard. I didn't tell anyone, either, as I was going through the whole biopsy/diagnosis process. As you say - why involve everyone and worry them until you have to, right? Hope things turn out welln November for you - PJH

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Kimberleygl, Community Member
8/17/09 10:18pm

I'll let you all know what the outcome is when I know. In the mean time, I think I will surf through this group! I like it!

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PJ Hamel, Health Guide
8/17/09 10:24pm

Great - welcome! You'll find TONS of helpful informaiton here, and lots of support from this welcoming community of women - PJH

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Kimberleygl, Community Member
8/17/09 10:37pm

Next thing for me to search is if microcalcifications cause sorness! For a long time I worked at a place where I carried 60-70 pound pails and glass carboys of wine around all day. I thought the soreness was from muscle strain but I haven't worked there since February (laid off) yet I'm still sore. I'm an AA to an A (depending on bra size Laughing) Wish I knew about this place when my mom was going through it all...if this was here 10 years ago!

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PJ Hamel, Health Guide
8/18/09 8:48am

I've never hear of microcalcifications causing soreness - there's no reason they should. Maybe you did some long-term damage with all that lugging? And no, I'd say this site wasn't here 10 years ago - I think it goes back to about 2004, near as I can figure... Have a great day! PJH

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Kimberleygl, Community Member
8/18/09 9:00am

All the stuff I read about microcalcification said there was no feeling. It NEVER dawned on me that I might have done "damage" to the muscles etc buy lugging that around for 7 1/2 years! Because of my legs (aka Robolegs..wear leg braces) I couldn't squat to lift the wine off the floor and put it on counters etc..I had to bend over at my waist to do it...day in and day out.

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crashmom, Community Member
8/23/09 6:08pm

I had microcalcifications found on my yearly mammogram with suggested follow up in 6 monts.  Even though there is no family history of breast cancer, I felt I could not wait.  I was refered to a local facility, and after additonal studies were done, I had a sterotatic biopsy.  I was found to have DCIS.  While I have been told that I it is not considered aggressive, I am so glad that I did not wait 6 months.

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Kimberleygl, Community Member
8/23/09 6:21pm

Oh wow! I have been reading a lot of info where some have DCIS and some don't as a result of the microcalcifications being a
"warning" of what could be. With BC history in the family and not. I guess I have been on the fense on if I should look into it now, or wait just another 14 weeks or so. Time flies when you are having fun Laughing. I have read DCIS is the least invasive too. But as we all know...each case is different. I guess I don't want to be "told you so" by the medical community if nothing except microcalcifications are there. I haven't and won't tell my family unless something is found. I should flip a coin on wait..or not wait! Thank you for letting me know about your case! I am glad I came here since I have no one to talk to anywhere else. If only I was a worrier..then I would have no problem decideing what to have done back in June! Maybe it is deep in my brain...if it wasn't, I would not have asked for opinions. Nuts...back to square one. 

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crashmom, Community Member
8/23/09 8:57pm

I am not a worrier per se, but I am impatient.  And I tend to follow my hunches.  I have been told that this was found very early, and I feel very lucky that the radiologist found those six little dots on the mammogram.  I also live, and work near a city that has several breast centers, so I can easily explore my options every step of the way.

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Kimberleygl, Community Member
8/23/09 9:46pm

Hello again! I am sorry I didn't write totally what I thought, I didn't mean anyone here (you included) was a worrier at all. I admire you and others that you went on your gut feeling (hunches) and you were right! Some days my gut says there is more then microcalcifications, then my brain says I have nothing and follow what the radiologist wrote. My brain seems to win over my gut in my internal argument. I guess time will tell. The town 15 minutes from here has a new cancer wing and I am close to Toronto Ontario as well. I am so glad you caught yours early! 

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PJ Hamel, Health Guide
8/23/09 9:51pm

Just to clarify, DCIS is by definition non-invasive. Ductal carcinoma in situ - with the "in situ" meaning it's contained within the duct. DCIS and LCIS (lobular) are also the only breast cancers considered curable - they have something like a 99.9% 5-year survival rate. I'd say you could go either way - wait, or ask for a biopsy. A bippsy might reveal nothing now, but in six months? Maybe something. As you say, this is a real "on the fence" situation. Ultimately, ignore all of our suggestions and advice, and do what your heart tells you! PJH

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Kimberleygl, Community Member
8/23/09 10:01pm

I was almost going to sign off then saw your post! Thank you so much for the info! Actually everyone here has helped me with their stories etc. If I wait, it's now only until middle or end of November for the follow-up mammogram. The "pain" or "strain" I keep feeling each day is as if someone is pushing hard in a spot on the breast (left one) with the microcalcifications. But it isn't constant. I sometimes wish the radiologist said lets test futher instead of wait...but internet research says 6 months is common. I am my worst enemy :)

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By Kimberleygl, Community Member— Last Modified: 01/26/14, First Published: 08/17/09