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Archive for the ‘breast health’ Category

Biopsy

I had a core biopsy done yesterday on cystic growths in my breasts.

Many of you may not know, but I am “lumpy” :oD I have multiple cysts and nodules in both my breasts. I have known about this since 2003 and had been having my annual mammogram and sonogram since then.

I dreaded the thought of having a biopsy, but I guess, this procedure became inevitable the moment my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2006 and died from it the following year. It was just a matter of time.

Last month on my breast sonogram routine exam, the doctors found multiple new growths (bilaterally), and some of those existing ones increased in size. But what really concerned them are two particular lumps, one from each breast, that look suspicious. These findings established the need for me to have biopsy done on those two lumps in question, especially given the history of my family, particularly that of my very own mother.

I first noticed the lumps during a self-examination. Looking back, I realized that it was God’s providence that led me to discover those lumps. I can never forget that day. I came from a friend’s Mary Kay party, where one of the sales people, a former nurse, talked about Mary Kay’s support on Breast Cancer Research and the importance of doing a self-breast examination.

Mind you, I had never done a self-exam before then – oh yes, I’ve heard of it, but I ignored them thinking that I was invincible; you know how it is when you’re younger. Plus of course, at that time, I had no idea that cancer was already lurking in my mother’s bosom – silently, slowly but surely eating her away, so to speak.

That Mary Kay sales lady would never know (God bless her!) but her talk resonated within me, so much so that the first thing I did when I came home was to do a self-exam. To my horror, I felt a knot, something akin to the size of a piece of marble. Then, I became hysterical when I realized what it is and could be. The fear of death rose up within me like a bile. I cried, I wept, I sobbed, and I called the doctor. And the rest is history.

One of the lumps in question is actually a cluster of cysts. The doctor dealt with this first but it was nothing but a normal cyst filled with liquid. The doctor aspirated the liquid with a needle. This one was definitely not a problem, thank God. On the other hand, the other one is a solid mass — tender but solid. For this one, the doctor couldn’t aspirate anything, so she had to take a core tissue sample (using an instrument fitted with a needle which they stabbed me with about 10 times!). The sample tissue was sent to the pathology for tests. The doctor confirmed that it was a good call to have this particular lump biopsied. Better be careful than sorry – and I agree wholeheartedly. I don’t have to be told about the devastation that cancer can bring about to someone’s life. I have witnessed it first hand with my mother.

How am I doing, if you ask? I was a bit apprehensive going in for the procedure because of the physical pain than anything else. As it turned out, everything was much better than I expected. Thanks to Lidocaine. :o)

In all honesty though, the real battle took place in my mind. As I laid in bed while the procedure was being done, I couldn’t help but think about my mother. Memories of her plight – the emotional and physical turmoil she had to go through with her fight against breast cancer – they’re all still fresh in my head. Afterall, it’s only been a year since she passed away. What if the biopsy yields bad news? I wondered.

But it is in moments of weakness that our Lord’s strength is made perfect. I simply cannot- MUST not – allow fear to do it’s number on my mind. So I took hold of my thoughts and laid them captive in Jesus Christ. His peace came over me and held me. I know that as a child of the living God, infirmity no longer has power over me. Any curse on me or my family in form of disease or sickness, has been broken by the blood of Jesus and the power of His resurrection. This I believe with all my heart.

In a couple of days, I will be receiving the results of my biopsy. But I believe that it will just be another confirmation of God’s mighty work in my life. Whose report should I believe? Of course, the report of the Lord that says “CANCER has no place in my body, His temple!”.

I will praise Him with all my heart; I will glorify His name forever. For great is His love toward me; He has delivered me from the depths of the grave….” (Psalm 86: 12-13, with my paraphrase)

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Breast Health

First of all, many thanks to my friend Conni for the information below. This is very important not just to me but to all the women out there.

Are you doing a self-breast exam monthly, and seeing your OBGYN for a check-up yearly? After age 40 you should start getting screened for a mammogram and if you have a history of breast cancer (or any type of cancer for that matter), should be earlier than 40.

Every time a woman gets her period, there are hormonal changes that occur in our body, our breasts swell up and when we don’t get pregnant, of course the body’s immune system does this wonderful thing of getting rid of that dead tissue in our breasts . But when our body doesn’t all get rid of it due to some factors like diet (caffeine, bad fats, etc), stress (that’s why we must exercise), then we get these calcified or dead tissues and some might form into lumps or cysts.
A friend of Conni’s shared with her an interesting story about her friend’s sister, who after years of getting breast biopsies, finally got tired and looked around for any answer–came across SELF BREAST MASSAGES. Every night, she would take warm sesame oil and massage each breasts in a gentle but firm circular motion (preferably clockwise), then outward motion starting from the center–then like the spokes of the wheel. You can use two fingers, and then the palm of your hand. Other studies say that you can do the massages even without the oil, the point here is to encourage blood flow in and out of your lymph nodes. (This is especially important after wearing a bra all day). Anyway, after she started doing this regularly, on her next breast biopsy–the surgeon had to cancel the whole surgery because the breast was clear!

There are several book written about self breast massage for women. I don’t know why I’ve never come across this before. But sometimes, God uses our own predicament to make us hunger for knowledge/wisdom and the find the answer. Isn’t that true most of the time?
Well, hope this information helps me and you.

P.S. Here are some recommended supplement items that doctors say help
turmeric & coq10 (known to reduce cysts in lab studies)
flaxseed oil, evening primrose oil

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