There was no lump -- a Breast Cancer blog

This blog is about my experience with Inflammatory Breast Cancer.
You can learn more about Inflammatory Breast Cancer at or

The names of my Doctors have been changed.



Contact me at Liane58 at gmail dot com
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Location: United States

Thursday, September 16, 2004

Surgery Scheduled -- and my fears

My surgery (radical modified mastectomy of the right breast) is scheduled for Ocotober 13. I am worried about this, but am feeling much better after the email exchange below with my Doctors -- very reassuring.

Dr. Smith and Dr. Jones,

I'm feeling a lot of anxiety about my impending surgery. After seven chemo treatments, it seems a little silly to be in denial, but my diagnosis does seem kind of abstract to me. My right breast looks perfectly fine. Completely innocent. Apparently harmless. I wish there were some picture I could see of my cancer; after all, the dentist always shows me the problem on the X-ray before drilling. Is there anything from the mammogram, the ultra-sound, the MRI, that I could look at? If not a picture, details of results? Data? Documentation? Evidence?

I have the two one-page pathology reports, but there must be something more detailed than that - you must have big files on me, right? I don't claim my feelings are rational, but if I could see more information about my diagnosis, I think I'll feel better. Sorry to be labor intensive.

Signed, Sleepless in Somerville (Liane)

Dr. Jones (the surgeon) replied:
I understand your feelings Liane. As I remember,
> the MRI showed the problem
> most clearly. If you pick up all your films and
> bring them to your next
> visit with you, I will put everything up and go over
> it with you so you will
> feel more confident about the need to go forward
> with the surgery.
> All the best-


and Dr. Smith (the oncologist)wrote:
I agree with Dr. Jones - the MRI may put things in better perspective. I'd also be glad to go over your inital diagnosis, staging, and go over the data that supports this approach.
Never apologize for having questions about your treatment -
that's what we are here for.

SO, I will be meeting with both these Doctors and will get more information
-- more than I need, I'm sure.