12 answers

Who Has Had Breast Nodule Biopsy?

I had my first/baseline mammogram about a month ago and a nodule was found. Had another mammogram and an ultrasound and visit to surgeon. Going to have an ultrasound guided biopsy at Gwinnett medical Duluth on Tuesday. Surgeon is very confident that it is benign. I was feeling ok about everything until the nurse called with all my instructions: Wear a blouse so I don't have to pull a shirt on over my head. Wear slip on shoes so I don't have to bend over to tie. Stop taking my fish oil pills and other supplements. I'll need to ice the site 20 minutes on/off the rest of the day. Sleep in a bra for 3 or 4 days after. Wear a sports bra that hooks in the front. What?!
The surgical nurse said it was no big deal and she went back to work after having one. The nurse that called me is saying bring someone and she wouldn't come alone if it was her.
Can anyone tell me what to expect? This nodule/fibroid cyst thing is quite deep. Can't feel it at all. The ultrasound technician had to really push to find it.
I was going to drive myself. My hubby is working from home close by. But will need to go pick up the children from school before I'm done. I'm thinking I could call him if I didn't feel ok to drive. My sister said she could come into town if I want her. But don't want to do that to her if it's not that major.
Any advice is greatly appreciated!

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Years back I took my ex-MIL and she needed some help. She didn't feel like driving after. She was very tired after it was over just wanted to go home and rest. She got a bit more then just over the counter meds since hers was so deep. You should always have someone there, not just for support but you may not feel like you think you will. Better to be safe then sorry about having someone there.

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I had it done. It's not a big deal, not the most comfortable thing you'll ever do and the incision site will be sore for a day or two. I carried an ice pack around the next day. Took Aleve. Felt it when I moved my arm a certain way. It doesn't qualify as pain, just uncomfortable. Probably the driving is because you are reaching your arms forward for the steering wheel and that will hurt right afterwards. When I came out to go home I had an "I've been traumatized" feeling and stayed still. I think a driver is a great idea for that reason. You won't be able to pick up anything heavy the first day without feeling it tug.


Hi C.,
I haven't even gone through this but the nurse's instructions do sound typical of just about any surgery. I'm with the other ladies though, ask your sister to come for support. You'd want to be there for her and sometimes we mamas/wifes get so 'independent' that we forget it's OK to need or want someone there simply because we're afraid of causing a slight inconvienence.

Anyway, like I said, I haven't had this procedure done but I did have a breast augmentation and was given instructions to bring a sports bra that clasps in the front. Champion makes a couple (you can find at sporting good stores or if you have a Hanes/Bally outlet nearby, they sell them as well). I bought one that zips in the front and hated it even though I bought it on the recommendation of another friend who loved it- ha! I think they suggest a sports bra for the extra support and the fact that they're not as uncomfortable to sleep in if you do have any swelling. The good news is you can always wear it in the future. I bought another Champion one with "extra support" that hooks in the back like a regular bra so I don't have to pull it over my head and I love it (I would just hook it in the front then turn it around when I was too sore to reach around). I wear it now whenever I run b/c the pull-over ones just don't seem to hold 'em close enough.

Wishing you the best outcome!

If your nodule is deep they may give you a sedative of some kind. This will keep you from driving home. They want you to wear a button shirt because if you have to lift your arms you may pull stitches. They want to you wear slip on shoes because sometimes these procedures can make you feel weak and bending over may be uncomfortable for you. Fish oil can make you more prone to bleeding as can other supplements. The ice is to prevent swelling. It is better to plan for the worse case scenario and hope for the best.
Good Luck with your procedure.

I have had the same biopsy (although at a different faciliy), then a lump removed and then 2 years later another lump removed. The biopsy is a little uncomfortable but they do numb the area. I did not have any issues after the biopsy or either lumpectomy and was able to go back to work quickly in all three cases. I hate that the nurse scared you by saying that you should not go alone, even though I agree with her. If hubby could go that would be great, but a friend would be a fine substitute. I was just nervous about the entire process and the "what ifs" if the lump was not benign. Everything turned out fine in my case, but you still worry night and day until you get the results. If you can have a friend there to keep you company while you wait, grab some lunch or a coffee with you afterwards and drive you home so you can relax a little I would do that.

Good luck. I am sure everything will be fine.

Hello fellow MK Consultant!

I found myself having a ct- guided breast Ultrasound followed by the biopsy when I was just one week postpartnum! My mother came along because I had just given birth, but after the procedure was over, I felt well enough to drive. I do not recall having to ice the site, but I did have to wear a bra, which was my normal bra, not the front closure sports bra. I wore the bra to help keep my bandage in place. Overall, it was not a major event to me, but mine was done at the Carlton Breast Center at Phoebe Putney Mem. Hospital in Albany,Ga, different techniques may be in play! Good Luck and many prayers for good heaalth to you!
D. Hodges

that would be me. this was done many years ago when my first son was only 2 {he is twenty six now} mine was quite extensive and on both sides.i had just quit nursing about four months prior. unfortunately my doctor did not tell me about aspiration of the nodules and he took a very very large portion of tissue out of each breast all benign. it was very painful after and alot of swelling. however in your case if the nodule is small i think the nurse is giving the right advise unless they go in and find a larger area which could happen. i would have a back-up plan just in case. by the way, have they tried to aspirate it yet ? this can sometimes save surgery at all. i wish that had been the case with me.it left me with scars encircling both areolas and very mis shapened breasts. i have not gone proudly bare chested since. good luck and my prayers are with you for great results

She is being cautious! I just had a biopsy on my Thyroid and while totally different, I sat if a chair for 30 before they would let me go.
The numbing shot and test itself can stress some folks out enough that the body reacts differently. Because it is your breast, closely connected to arms and tendons and muscles....I would NOT drive myself home.
Everything she says about the bra's etc, is extremely good advice. The pain will be less with the support of the bras and the ice will help with swelling. The part I see as 'scary' here is that when the Biopsy was set up or seen in a Dr office prior to this phone call, someone should have gone over some of this with you so that you were better prepared.
As the anesthesia works through your system, you can't control all your muscles. That's why you don't drive after surgeries.... the insurance company would have a field day if something happened with you behind the wheel from the hospital! Yes, there is pain from that and your response slows greatly, so NOT worth the risk.
Chin up and follow they say. Hoping and praying it will be just a nodual and nothing bad.

I had one a long time ago and I was only 11 at the time...it was just cyst and had to be asperated....she told you most of those things so that you will have an easier time during and after the procedure....the supplements may cause more pain, so that's why you must not take them usually a day or so before the procedure...the blouse is so that you don't have pain in putting it back on later....wearing a bra continuously is so that the hanging of your breast (because of the procedure) won't cause you any unwanted pain (especially since the nodule is in a deep position, they have to go deep to get to it and you may have pain once the numbness goes away)....and on the funny side, believe me when you get older and your breasts want to creep south, you'll want to wear a bra all day : )....What the nurse shared was her experience and thats not to say that your procedure will be the same as hers...they want you to bring someone with you as a precautionary means, since everyone responds differently to anesthesia and you may not be up to driving yourself home...so don't worry so much and I hope all goes well with the procedure....

I've had biopsy's and breast cancer. First of all, don't panic. They are being very cautious and that is a wonderful thing. Early detection can save your life. It probably is benign but still I would advise you take someone with you for emotional support. You don't need to go through this scare alone. Make a fun day of it with your sister. She can keep you company, go have lunch and be there for you! Would you consider it a small thing if she was going through this concern? I didn't think so! There are so many woman going through biopsy's that DON'T end up with cancer so breathe and know that you just have to take this next step with support. I have been a survivor for almost 10 years, so early detection does save lives. Please accept your sister's loving concern and don't go alone. I will lift you up in prayer.

Years back I took my ex-MIL and she needed some help. She didn't feel like driving after. She was very tired after it was over just wanted to go home and rest. She got a bit more then just over the counter meds since hers was so deep. You should always have someone there, not just for support but you may not feel like you think you will. Better to be safe then sorry about having someone there.

C., I've had ultrasound guided core needle biopsy twice, in 1999 and 2001. I wore whatever I chose those days, and drove myself both times. It is good to plan to take pain reliever as that cuts down on the brusing. The ice packs are helpful with the brusing, too, so you should plan on doing that step. I wasn't told about the sleeping in the bra or slip on shoes stuff, so I didn't do those. You do need to stop the supplements as those can affect how quickly you stop bleeding, although, it's a teensy hole, so not much blood.
If you will be nervous,certainly take someone with you - although they can't be in the room with the procedure. I went out to lunch with one of my sisters immediately after the first time.

It sounds as though the nurse gave you all the typical precautionary guidelines for any/all breast surgeries regardless of the intensity. I suggest calling the surgery center and asking what their policy is regarding the discharge of patients. Even a minor surgery may require that the patient is picked up by a friend/relative. Do this before arriving because they will not admit you to surgery if your driver is not present to sign off. Best of luck to you!

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