Hello everyone. I am in the middle of the waiting game for a diagnosis and trying to stay positive. I started out with a visit to the doctor as I had a lumpy neck and I was getting some pain which wouldn't go away. He put me on antibiotics but said he would refer me to the ENT. Hospital phoned the next day, had a cancellation for the day after - Fri 13th. Consultant examined me, ran through a few possibilities including whether I had cats (yes I do) because there is something called cat scratch disease which can cause infection and neck lumps. Very thorough, took 5 x FNA biopses and organised immediate chest x-ray and blood tests, said that he would also organise a CT scan and said he wanted me to stay on antibiotics but would see me in a fortnight. A week later I returned to the GP as the antibiotics had run their course and there was less pain but it had not gone - further antibiotics given. Then contacted by hospital again, could I go in for ultrasound on 24th, and CT scan on 27th before seeing consultant also on 27th. The ultrasound on my neck showed lumps on both sides. The CT scan then had to be rearranged to 31st as there was a fault with the machine. When I went back to the consultant he told me the chest x-ray was ok, but the cytologist had given an opinion on the biopses showing 95% likelihood of cancer cells present. He said the neck glands would not be the main site of the cancer, and now needed to locate the primary site. Also needed to confirm the biopsy results. So I had a further 6 core biopses on the neck straightaway and he tried to get a mammogram and the CT scan brought forward to that afternoon. It wasn't possible (in any case the CT scan requires fluids to be taken beforehand). But hats off to the hospital, they phoned me at 8.50am on 30th and booked me in for a mammogram that afternoon.
After the mammogram I was asked to see the radiologist who then did an ultrasound of my breasts, then said she wanted more pictures from mammography so these were done. She located a problem area in my left breast, and would have liked to have done biopses there and in the armpit. However, this would have had consequences for the clarity of the CT scan so this was ruled out. I had the rearranged CT scan on 31st. The next step is to await the results of the core biopses done in ENT as these should inform as to where the cancer is spreading from, at this stage it is not conclusive regarding breast cancer. I should get news next week as the ENT consultant is right on top of this and says he will see me as soon as he has something to discuss. By the way this is the much maligned NHS, not private, and I have to say they have been fantastic.
I am trying not to jump to conclusions, although the 95% assessment from the FNA's is pretty awful. I am concentrating on reading about it (much as the gut reaction is to give this all a wide berth) and as a result I am making "lifestyle changes" - basically means eating more green vegetables and making other changes in what I eat, and trying to up the amount of exercise I do daily. I have also started to take Pomi-T. I have so many questions but there won't be real answers till those results are in (and even then it might not be the full picture). I still have a lot to learn and I obviously have it wrong as I didn't think that cancer lumps were initially painful.
Got to head off for my walk while there is a brief break in the rain here, it also helps me. I want to say good luck to anyone at this stage as it is pretty difficult, my heart goes out to you. Hopefully some of us will find out that it isn't as bad as it first seemed.