I am currently back in the old Waiting Game, waiting for a result next Tuesday (16th February) ...
As I am now back in the 'mainstream' for regular breast screening - mammograms every 3 years now, rather than every 6 months or yearly as I had for five years following each diagnosis, surgery and subsequent radiotherapy treatment (2004 and 2009), I attended hospital for regular double mammogram screening on 27th January.
I was told that the result would be sent to my GP in about 2 weeks (which is the norm).
However, the following Monday, 1st February (just 5 days later with 2 of those days being weekend), I received a letter sent by courier and delivered into my hand, advising that before they could give the result of that screening I had to undergo an assessment and an appointment had been made for me to attend this at the same hospital on the following Monday (8th February).
The letter also stated that I should expect to be there between 2 and 4 hours, and that a Cancer Care Nurse would be in attendance at that appointment, "for support".
I have learned from previous experience over the years that a Macmillan Nurse is always present at an appointment when they have bad news to deliver.
I went to that appointment on Monday just past, where I was told that "some changes" have been noted since my last screening 3 years ago.
I had to undergo a further 'specialised, more comprehensive' screening - which was really, really painful
, and then after a bit of a wait outside in the waiting room - which was totally empty apart from myself, I was brought into another room where I had to lie on a bed and was introduced to the doc there who gave me a number of 'jelly scans' in the same area where my first diagnosis & treatment had been done way back in 2004.
Straight after that I had a biopsy done, with a local anaesthetic, again in that same area.
Seven samples were taken for the biopsy! Because of the local anaesthetic I didn't feel a thing, but could hear the 'click' of the needle each time a sample was taken. Each time just before the click I had to remain perfectly still and not move until I would hear the click - then I could breathe!
All of that took no more than 2 hours. I was given a 'result & consultation appointment' date to return there on 16th February (next Tuesday) when the results of the biopsy investigation should be back from the lab.
If for any reason the results are not back by that time they will phone me to rearrange that appointment.
So, it's that awful waiting time again
, but at least it's not too long a wait now until Tuesday. To be continued ...