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waiting for a biopsy result

1 Feb 2018 08:32

My husband had a biopsy on 19 Jan we were told yesterday our next appt is not till 23 Jan when we are assuming we will be told.  Is this long wait normal and if not what can we do.  The waiting has become so depressing for both of us.

No results until 23 Feb, is this long wait normal?

Re: waiting for a biopsy result

3 Feb 2018 10:11 in response to TKR

Hi TKR, 

Waiting for results, as you and your husband are finding out, can be very tough but I just wanted you to know you're not alone. Many of our members here are all too familiar with this situation and hopefully some of them will pop by soon to share their advice and experiences with you. 

If you are concerned about the length of time you're having to wait maybe you or your husband could chase it up with your specialist's or GP's surgery and ask if the waiting time is normal in your husband's case (depending on what the biopsy was for). Hopefully this will put your minds at ease and make the wait slightly more bearable.

Do let us know how you get on next month TKR, we'll be thinking of you.

Kind regards, 

Steph, Cancer Chat Moderator

Re: waiting for a biopsy result

3 Feb 2018 11:20 in response to TKR


No, that length of wait for a biopsy result isn't normal unless the test isan unusual one. My own initial biopsy results came at different times due to the complexity of some tests. My cancer type was identified within about ten days but my HER status took about a month.

Hospitals have strict targets they should meet around how quickly after a referral patients diagnosed with cancer should start treatment.

As Steph has suggested it would be worth phoning the hospital to ask whether you could be seen sooner as you are anxious. I did this by asking for my consultant's medical secretary. You could ask your GP to chase this up.

Good luck

Re: waiting for a biopsy result

6 Feb 2018 08:15 in response to davek

Thank you for your replies.  We had a scan and on 22 Dec the specialist said he was 90% certain that it was cancerous.  He said the next thing would be a biopsy which he marked as urgent. This was on 19 Jan after this procedure we were told 2-3 weeks for result.The biopsy was on a tumour in the tube near to his kidney.  When we got the letter that just said next appt 23 Feb we contacted our GP who said he couldn't do anything and said it was normal for NHS.  We contacted the consultant and a specialist nurse phoned and said it was the earliest she could get us an appt :-((

Since the biopsy my husband has more or less slept 23 hours our of 24.  If I didnt make him he would not get up or eat.  I get him out of bed for a meal which he eats some of and then he just lays on the sofa or goes back to bed to sleep.  I feel like I am just watching him die already.  I am so lonely 


Re: waiting for a biopsy result

6 Feb 2018 11:06 in response to TKR

I feel so angry on your behalf.
Your GP is wrong, it isn't normal for the NHS. He or she would be moving heaven and earth if the patient was one of their loved ones. 
You could try emailing and writing to your MP and copying the email and letter to the Chief Executive of the NHS Trust where your husband is being treated. Spell out the story so far, how you feel about this and asking why the NHS Cancer waiting time targets are being ignored. 
It might help if you also copy your local newspaper or TV station.

Good luck

PS there are details of the cancer waiting times at the following location. These are supposedly the maximum waiting times. At the very least your husband should begin treatment within 62 days of being referred to the hospital by his GP.


Re: waiting for a biopsy result

7 Feb 2018 07:17 in response to davek

Thank you so much for your reply I swing between feeling I am making a fuss and then getting really anxious as I see my husband suffering.  I have checked the time limits imposed and it seems they are a bit vague and open to interpretation as 'start the treatment' the stent that was inserted would mean they were within their timescales.  Also was told by the McM Nurse that once diagnosed with cancer treatment should start within 31 days.  However my husband has not yet been officially diagnosed with cancer even though consultant on 22 Dec said in his opinion 90% chance its cancer as we are not due to get result of biopsy until 23 Feb.  In the meantime my husband seems much worse since the op I will be starting the ordeal of ringing my GP for an emergency appt this morning which means up to 100 calls trying to get through I am just praying we will not be fobbed of again.

Once again thank you for taking the time to reply as I feel very alone