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Note: This picture is a picture of my breast after it had been biopsied. It is a full side view of my breast with the nipple fully covered with my hand. I do believe this is a tasteful picture however I understand that this might cross the line for some who wish not to see this image. It is not my intent to upset anyone, this is part of my story and I think many, especially those who might be going through this, will benefit from and appreciate this picture. Click here to View Full Image.
This Is My Story
This is a series of post where I am telling my story of my first mammogram and what followed. I encourage you to read the first 2 post in this series before you read this post.
So lets move on to the third part of this story….
A Few Words About This Photo
I would like to note that never in a million years did I think I would be taking a picture of my breast to share with you all, and I am sorry if it isn’t the most pleasant picture, but I wanted to share every aspect of this experience, and I thought a photo of the biopsy site after it was done would be good to share.
The unknown is often the scary part of any procedure. I had no idea that a biopsy would make me bruise like this, and everyone is different so keep that in mind. My reaction to the biopsy can be completely different for another.
Thanks to my dear friend Jen for letting me whip out my boobs for this photo shoot…love you girl
Preparing For My Biopsy
So the day has come for me to have this mass biopsied. Oddly, I am nothing nervous. The actual procedure doesn’t bother me…it is the waiting and the results that terrifies me.
I have surrounded myself with a support group and am so grateful for good friends and an amazing family!
I am called 3 different times from the staff informing me of what needs to be done before my procedure. I am grateful for this thorough procedure because yesterday was still quite a blur.
- No aspirin
- No Ibuprofen
- No blood thinners
- And a review of medications
Easy enough, I can handle that!
The Day of My Biopsy
I get there 15 minutes early and head back to get a robe on…I am starting to like these robes…(not)!
I am instructed to wait in the waiting area and Cher’s music is playing in the background. I have never been much of a fan of Cher, but today her words are comforting. Who ever thought Cher would be comforting but she was…she was filling my mind with her words and my “what if” scenarios were on the back burner…
The nurse comes out and takes me back to a quiet ultrasound room…gosh it is so quiet, I hate that there is no noise…reality sets in and my nerves come front and center. Gosh I feel so vulnerable.
I have a different ultrasound tech than yesterday, and she begins the process of walking me through the whole procedure. It will take about 45 minutes, but mine actually took about an hour and a half.
They would sterilize the area that they were taking a sample from and numb the area with a local anesthetic. After I was numb, they would place a needle like item into my skin and work their way to the area in question. They can see this area with the help of the ultrasound.
Once there, they will collect samples of the tissue to be biopsied. In my case they took 4 samples. We had what they called a “time out”, this is where we all came together and I spelled my name and I told them what procedure they were performing on me.
After all this was explained, they started the procedure. I have to say, the actual procedure wasn’t bad at all. I was numb so couldn’t feel to much. It was straight forward and they did a good job preparing me with what was to come.
After The Biopsy
After the biopsy they went over a list of things to do and things not to do.
Things to do…
- Ice every hour for the first 24 hours for 15-20 minutes an hour to help with swelling
- Use Tylenol for pain if needed.
- Keep area clean and bandaged up for 48-72 hours.
Things not to do…
- No lifting anything over 10 pounds
- No aspirin or Ibuprofen for 72 hours
- No getting the wound wet for 24 hours and no swimming or spas for 72 hours
I was given a detailed list of things to do and what to expect. Even with this list, my recovery was somewhat unexpected.
The Bruising and Swelling
Alright, it was over! I had a sense of relief. We are one step closer to getting to the answer of whether or not I have breast cancer. I wasn’t to terribly sore and oddly seemed to be in good spirits and in somewhat of a good mood. Some of my fears seemed to lighten. Maybe I was actually scared about this procedure and just wouldn’t let myself believe that.
I didn’t dream that I would have so much bruising and swelling but as you can see in the picture above, I had both. That afternoon after the local anesthetic wore off, I became quite sore. Even after icing I was sore.
By the evening, the bruising really started to settle in. I was quite taken back that I was this sore. My girls were troopers and helped me out in any way they could. I was also grateful for my husbands support. I never really tapped into his emotions and the thought that maybe he is scared too. I know that he is, but he is being strong for me and I appreciate that in this fragile moment.
On A Positive Note
On a positive note, I did receive an unexpected phone call later that evening from my regular doctor who truly practices holistic medicine. I didn’t know if I should call her or not and when I told her that she said “absolutely, I should have called!” I am so blessed to have found Dr. Rose Kumar with The Ommani Center.
To all of my local readers, if you are looking for a “truly” holistic practice, The Ommani Center (in Pewaukee) is a terrific facility!
After speaking with Dr. Kumar for 15 minutes, I knew I had someone who really was fighting for my health no matter what the outcome! She even went as far to give me her cell phone number and informed me that she was here for me and to call over the weekend if I needed anything! Wow, now that is someone who cares for her patients!
She said this to me: Remember Halle, there are always solutions. That was so comforting for me to hear. Up until now I felt scared and granted I am still scared but it helps knowing that I have someone that believes in my beliefs and is willing to help me through any challenges that might arise!
If you would like to read more and learn about Dr. Kumar she wrote a life changing book:
I have read this book twice and it has touched me spiritually in every way! Highly recommend it for anyone at any age! Read the reviews on Amazon…pretty amazing stuff!
And Now We Wait…
So now we wait once again. I swear the waiting is the hardest part. I had the test done on Thursday and I should have the results back on Monday or Tuesday as to whether or not I have breast cancer.
Am I scared? Hell yes I am! But my spiritual side keeps popping up and if I embrace it, I feel comfort and that is helping me through this whole process.
You Can Read Part 4 Here: This is My Story ~ Mammogram Part 4-The ResultsPAID ENDORSEMENT DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Your support keeps this blog running and is greatly appreciated.