All the tests to update new diagnosis

Nicky123 Member Posts: 28
edited March 1 in Newly diagnosed
What a couple of weeks I have had. After being called back to Breastscreen NSW (amazing service and staff), I had the battery of tests at the post mammogram assessment including 3 biopsies. 

Originally a lump and calcifications (left) and Stage 2 DCIS and calcifications (right) in between Stage 1-2 DCIS. 

To the surgeon (amazing, feeling very confident with her) and then an MRI yesterday to rule out a higher stage. 

Called back today for another 2 biopsies (left again, completely different places) and another MRI. Lymph nodes are looking ok.

Back to the surgeon on Monday AM to discuss treatment options when pathology is back. 

I am so grateful for how kind all the nurses, radiologists and doctors have been / even when I have ‘lost it,’ almost fainted or felt nauseous etc etc. 

Taking it one day at a time and trying not to predict or worry. 

It all happens so, so fast - so much to take in and to recalibrate every visit - something new and something more.

I know that all these tests and checks will help to work out exactly what is happening and then formulate the best treatment plan moving forward. 

I don’t have any questions at the moment - well, lots but know I just need to wait. I do want to say how helpful it’s been reading the posts and discussions. I’m sure I’ll be back for more in the future. 

Thank you, Nicky (51, Sydney)


  • Julez1958
    Julez1958 Member Posts: 1,032
    Hi @Nicky123
    Thinking of you while you await the test results - try to  keep busy as this helps keep the mind from “ dwelling”.
    Great you have a good team , mine was/ is great too.
    The edit function seems to be not working at the moment to add your location but I am in Sydney and am 64.
  • Abbydog
    Abbydog Member Posts: 445
    I'm sorry for your news. Stay patient. One step at a rime.
    I'm glad that you have already read many posts.
    Try to stay positive. Fingers crossed that the MRI is clear.
    After you have a plan of treatment, ask any questions that you think of.
    If you have time and feel like it, fill in your story on your profile.
    It helps some of us give better advise.
    Thinking of you, good luck.

  • Nicky123
    Nicky123 Member Posts: 28
    Thanks so much @abbydog and @Julez1958 - trying to take your advice on board and have been keeping busy. Sleep is an issue - to be expected I guess. 

    I’ll edit my story - it seemed like it wasn’t working last night.

    I do have one question re breast care nurses. Although I have good friends (and elderly parents), I am single and wonder if you all think that this is something I’d be eligible for and would benefit from? Too early to say?

    thank you in advance, Nicky 
  • Blossom1961
    Blossom1961 Member Posts: 2,269
    Breast care nurses are there for everyone diagnosed with BC. They do not come to your house but they help you manage all your appointments and listen to any concerns you may have. You should have already been given one if they have one in your area. Ask at the hospital or look up McGrath BC nurses online and it should tell you if there is one in your area. All the best
  • Abbydog
    Abbydog Member Posts: 445
    I'm in Adelaide SA. I had my Surgery and Chemo in the Private System. R/T was done Public.
    In my private hospital they had Breast Nurses, They visited a couple of times when I had the surgery, which was nice. But it was nothing like the portrayal of McGrath Breast Care nurses in the media. No one offering to go to Drs or Chemo etc. No big relationship, to help get through. I wonder if in the private system there is less on offer, Or there are more of those nurses in the eastern states. 
    I was 'Lucky' to have friends who have had BC. Two of those gave me very good advice, and I was able to ask anything. One had almost identical type of cancer and treatment.
    Please ask us anything that you may think helpful.
  • Nicky123
    Nicky123 Member Posts: 28
    Thank you @Blossom1961 and @Abbydog - I really appreciate the advice - and kindness. 

    I am looking at the Mater in Sydney (private) for surgery and RNSH (public) for rad at this stage - let’s see what Monday brings. 

    Nicky x
  • Abbydog
    Abbydog Member Posts: 445
    Hopefully you get the results that you hope for. Perhaps you will be offered a good BC nurse, if not ask about them. They sound terrific, sometimes.

  • Julez1958
    Julez1958 Member Posts: 1,032
    Hi @Nicky123
    I had my surgery at at St Vincent’s Private here in Sydney and although there was a breast care nurse I never spoke to her until a couple of days before the surgery and then she visited me in hospital a couple of times .
    My medical team were great and the care I received in hospital was excellent .
    I have heard great things about the Mater.

  • Nicky123
    Nicky123 Member Posts: 28
    Hi @Julez1958 - thank you for letting me know, it’s so good to hear other people’s experiences. It’s a whole new world. 

    I’ve been having all my scans at the Mater and they have been great too - especially when I get upset or there’s needles involved. 

    Thanks again,
  • arpie
    arpie Member Posts: 7,259
    Welcome to the blog, @Nicky123 ... sorry to see you've joined our 'excusive group' (that nobody ever thought they'd join!)   We have a wealth of knowledge & info, as we've 'been there, done that' .... so speak from experience.   

    Both the Mater & North Shore are excellent hospitals (I used to work at North Shore in the 80s!!) I had my surgery (private) over at Westmead & stayed with family in Sydney afterwards, then my Rads was in Port Macquarie ... and even tho the rads and Medical Onc were 'public' - I've had the same Oncs for the whole time now, except if they were unavailable for health or holidays ... 

    If you continue posting on this thread, even after your surgery & rads -  you'll basically have a 'diary' of things 'as they happened' ..... I know I look back on my 'first post' now & then from 5 years ago to refresh my memory - it ended up going over 6 pages and 3,500 'views'!!  

    Do you have a trusted friend or family member to go with you to your meetings?  This is both for support and a 2nd set of ears .... my Sister In Law sat in on mine & was terrific, raising all sorts of questions - as I was a bit like a deer caught in headlights ..... it is all such a shock!

    Also consider recording your meetings on your phone - as it is too easy to forget what was said a lot of the time! (This is quite normal - Just the brain in overload ....) 

    Jump onto this thread & read up a bit on the group - it has some info on what to take to hospital, 'self assessment tick lists' for after your surgery to take with you (if you like) to your post op meetings .... and links to 'regular stuff' that we chat about now & then - art & crafts, pets, our gardens, 'wise words' and even some funnies ..... as we all need a laugh, too. xx. Feel free to add to any or all of them!  ;)

    Keeping busy is the best thing to stop worrying too much (tho it really is impossible not to ...)  

    Take care & all the best for your appt on Monday. xx
  • Nicky123
    Nicky123 Member Posts: 28
    edited March 3
    @arpie these messages mean so much to me - it’s been such a massive two weeks or so and the support in this group - yourself included - had been so comforting and helpful. Of course, kindness makes me quite teary at the moment, too! 

    Thank you for your comments and suggestions above - the thread is a really good idea. 

    I was born at RNSH - I’m really lucky that for treatment, I live within 10-15 mins of both hospitals. 

    Yes - I have a good group of friends as well as my sister in law. I took a friend to get results from Breastscreen and will take another friend to my surgeon on Monday for more results and treatment planning. I’ve been taking notes each time but a voice memo recording is such a good idea - as I definitely miss things. 

    Thank you for your suggestions rE the other groups, resources and activities - I’m going to check them out over the weekend. 

    I’ll update here on Monday night.

    thanks again for everyone’s support, ideas, experience and kindness. It’s making me feel like my feelings are normal in such a turbulent time.

    Nicky x

    ps had to withdraw from uni today (studying masters of adolescent health and wellbeing part time). Just couldn’t manage full time (new) job and all of this! #superwomannot It did make me a bit sad though - but ultimately sensible and very necessary. I had to get a medical certificate and it’s still very confronting using the words ‘breast cancer.’ 
  • FLClover
    FLClover Member Posts: 1,513
    @Nicky123 I was the same when I had to withdraw from my tafe course. It took me 5 minutes over the phone to explain why because I kept choking with tears when I had to say ‘breast cancer’. There was a lot of silence with them waiting for me to blurt it out 😄🤦🏼‍♀️🥲. They were understanding though, once I got the words out. 
    I also attend the Mater and NSP for scans etc because that’s where my current surgeon’s rooms are, and she’s also absolutely brilliant and wonderful. My first surgeon was at Lifehouse and although the hospital was great, he was not, so he got booted. I’m very happy that you like your surgeon too because it’s beyond important to be happy and confident with our medical team. Those hospitals in the north of Sydney are fantastic 👌🏻. 
    Good luck with everything 🍀♥️.
  • Nicky123
    Nicky123 Member Posts: 28
    Thank you for messaging @FLClover - much appreciated. Good to know rE northern Sydney - my surgeon is out of Mater and RNSH so feel very grateful it’s close. She is very caring / and importantly I get that sense she’s a terrific surgeon based on everyone’s feedback. 

    I’ve been thinking of people in regional areas and how much of an additional challenge this must be 😌

    Your TAFE story sounds so familiar - did you get back or take an ongoing break? I’ll take a look at your profile and story. 

    Thanks again for messaging and for your care.

    Nicky 🌸

  • FLClover
    FLClover Member Posts: 1,513
    edited March 4
    @Nicky123 No problem at all. It’s important to support each other 😊. 
    I’ve actually been regional since 2016, but I moved back to Sydney temporarily for my surgeries and treatment. I now travel to Sydney for appointments but I’m happy to do so as it’s definitely worth it. 

    To be honest, I wasn’t too happy with the tafe course I was doing as it was a bit boring but very time consuming. I initially thought I’d go on a break and then see how I felt, or look into changing the course. I’ve been too tired though, so have just left it. I think they have me down as on an ongoing break or similar. 
    After this diagnosis, I’ve decided not to do things that need to be forced or make me really unhappy, so not sure that course will ever be finished 😄🤷🏻‍♀️. 

    My profile is currently on private, but feel free to PM me if you have any questions or just to chat. That’s still possible with a private profile. 

  • Nicky123
    Nicky123 Member Posts: 28
    Thanks again for sharing @FLClover - including the offer to chat. 

    I am sure this has put different things in perspective - study included. 

    I’ll be back with an update here on Monday. For sure. 

    Nicky 🌸