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When a tumor is suspicious


This happened. You, or your doctor, or a mammogram found something suspicious. This is a case that every woman is afraid of and faced by thousands of women every year.
When Annette Soubel, a 49-year-old teacher, discovered a tumor in her chest, she said she only thought about it for two weeks and could not decide what to do. “When I discovered it, I was just having my period, and I decided to wait until it was over, in the faint hope that the tumor would disappear,” Annette said. She has not disappeared. I tried to think that I could not have anything dangerous, because in my family there was not a single case of cancer. But I could not calm down, and every time I undressed, I looked at her, felt her and became more and more nervous. In the end, one night I burst into tears and told everything to my husband. The next day, the two of us went to the doctor. She agreed that the tumor really inspires suspicion, but also tried to reassure me, saying that the final answer can only be given after the biography is done. Everything inside me turned upside down, I was sick. Tears came later. ”
“All women react differently to the news that they may have breast cancer,” says Dr. Laughan-Young. There are women who fall into a state of shock and become unable to perceive anything. Their brain does not withstand overload. Whatever we tell them they don’t hear. We have to send some women home, so this news affects them. ”
“Our patients tell us that they had periods when they refused to believe what had happened, periods of lethargy and absolute horror,” adds Mary Jean Massey, MD, a treating psychiatrist at the Sloan-Kettering Memorial Cancer Center, who advises breast cancer patients. Some women do not own their emotions and do not want to know the final diagnosis, but most behave very differently. They want to know the answer immediately. ”
“Most often, women are staunch, says Dr. LaughanYang, and react in a businesslike way. They say: "Well, tell me what I should do, and I will do it." And we write down the procedure: they must visit the surgeon, the surgeon will appoint a day when it will be possible to do a biopsy, they will undergo a biopsy under general or local anesthesia. We give out copies of their mammograms and other test results for the surgeon.
Having informed the patients all the available information, she continues, we show them their mammograms and the area of ​​concern. If they still do not feel the tumor because it was detected on a mammogram, for example, we let them feel that it is. If she seems very suspicious, we do not hide it, and if we think she is benign, we say that.
I also give women my home phone number, adds Dr. Laughan-Young, and ask them to call me at any time if they have any questions. The women told me that, although they did not call, the very possibility itself reassured them very much. ”