Would you share about your breast biopsy experience? What advice would you give others to prepare?

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member9403 (Survivor (1 year)) - 05 / 22 / 2012

I had a stereotactic biopsy. Which frankly, just seemed weird from the beginning. The doctor who originally told me I'd need to get it and in his explanation, it's kind of like getting an oil change! And in my head I was thinking wtf? Nothing about this is like getting an oil change! You are so weird!

That said, the actual procedure isn't that bad, mostly. I, because I am special, have trouble with local anesthetic - as in it wears off very quickly. (related: my dentist knows to have extra Novocaine for me because it wears off so quickly!) I told them this and the doctor gave me extra and in the middle of the actual biopsy it wore off. (Again I'd like to reiterate this is an issue I've had all my life and in my lifetime I've only met one other person who has the same, so even though I share this story with you, it is not something you should worry about happening to you!). I won't lie. It was not pleasant to have it wear off. I actually yelped and then, just broke into tears. The tears were a combination of pain, fear, anxiety, etc. But when the local wore off and I could feel what was going on, I just couldn't hold it in anymore. Bless the nurses and the doctor because they were quick to give me another shot and try to calm me down, but I was just done. The good news was so was the biopsy. (It actually went very fast).

Advice to others to prepare .... I'm not sure. Other than, if you are feeling nervous about it? Acknowledge that nervousness. It's natural to feel that way. Don't try to ignore (or let that fear make you delay making the appointment). Also, bring someone with you. I didn't bring someone with me. I wish I had. After the biopsy, I went to my car and just burst into tears all over again. And I remember thinking how the heck am I going to get myself home? I calmed down and did manage to make it home, but I do wish someone was there to give me a hug, tell me it would be okay, and then drive me home. I think, even without the local wearing off, I was much more nervous than I allowed myself to realize and just feeling so emotional. Things had been a whirlwind leading up to that moment and I didn't take any time to process that or think about it.

member3301 (Current Patient) - 05 / 22 / 2012

I have the same issues with novocaine and any other local aesthetic. I , at 5'4" 120 lb will need much more than any one else, I've had biopsies, podiatrist and dentist not believe me until I'm screaming pain! It's always been this way for me.
It's frustrating isn't it?!!!!!
Lorraine

member1665 (Survivor (2 - 5 years)) - 05 / 23 / 2012

I recently had a breast biopsy where the tissue pathology came back "tissue did not survive processing". I never realized that this can and does happen due to many factors such as sample size, chemical process and things sometimes outside of human error. Fortunately in this case the surgeon felt that the lump was actually being caused by some muscle tissue above the mastectomy scar fused to some scar tissue. He released it. The lump is gone now but the tissue he submitted for biopsy was a precuation.
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