Fibrocystic Breast Disease and Finding Yet Another Lump in My Breast {My Breast Lump Journey}

Two months ago, I heard the words fibroadenoma tumor for the very first time.

I’d discovered a lump in my breast at the age of 37. One diagnostic mammogram, one ultrasound and several consultations revealed that the lump I’d found in my left breast back in December was a non-cancerous fibroadenoma tumor. It was the best possible outcome and I breathed a huge sigh of relief. A repeat ultrasound was scheduled six months out to monitor the tumor. I circled the date in my calendar and went about my life.

Until I found yet another lump in my left breast.

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As I sat in my doctor’s office yesterday, my stomach turned.

I secretly hoped that she’d tell me I was insane; that I was imagining the development of a new lump. Unfortunately, she confirmed what I already knew – that I had yet another lump in my left breast.

And then she took it a step further and told me that I have fibrocystic breast disease.

A condition affected by hormonal changes, fibrocystic breast disease is fairly common and affects 60% of women. Symptoms include painful, lumpy breast lumps or cysts. Though these cysts are benign (non-cancerous), they make mammograms difficult to interpret and complicate the early detection of breast cancer.

The development of a new lump, coupled with my fibrocystic breast disease diagnosis and the fact that my breasts are dense, means that further testing is required.

And so my breast lump journey continues…

I’ve been referred to a specialist at a nationally accredited breast care center a couple hours away. They’ll be taking a comprehensive look at both breasts to ensure that there is no cancer present. They have everything they need onsite, making the whole process a little easier in terms of tests and procedures, and I’m confident that I’ll receive the best care possible.

I’m staying positive and hoping for the best.

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I’m also hoping that you’ll be inspired to perform monthly breast self-exams. Nearly 70% of all breast cancers are found through self-exams. They’re quick, painless and could save your life.

You owe it to yourself, and the people you love, to monitor your breast health!

25 Comments

  1. by alicia on March 8, 2012  1:17 pm Reply

    Thank you for the push, Kristi! And for sharing your story. I'm sorry for what you are going through. Just when I think I've heard it all-- I learn about a new disease. Our bodies are certainly complicated and taking the necessary precautions is key. Breast cancer runs in my family and I've been on a low dose of estrogen which further increases my chances, so I really need to be taking your words to heart. Hugs, my friend. Hope you feel better soon.

    • by Kristi on March 8, 2012  9:34 pm Reply

      Yes, you definitely need to be proactive if you've been taking estrogen and a family history of breast cancer. Better to be safe than sorry! But you already know that. ;) Thanks for all you do to spread awareness about skin cancer too! I've spent so much time in the sun over the years and I need to get my moles and freckles checked out sometime soon, just to be safe! Thanks for the sweet texts and for thinking about me, Lish. I'm so lucky to have you as a friend. :)

  2. by Pamela Gold on March 8, 2012  1:28 pm Reply

    I wish I had your positivity! You're right though, everything will be fine. Keep on educating!! I learn something every time I stop by.

    • by Kristi on March 8, 2012  9:44 pm Reply

      Thanks, Pam! I'm trying to remain positive, but there's a little part of me that's on the verge of freaking out. Trying to hold those feelings at bay as they're not helpful and I have no answers yet. So if you catch me in freak out mode, grab me by the shoulders and shake me! lol Loved your "That's Life" post. I'm always so moved by your honest, raw and heartfelt posts. Wish I had a magic wand, though.

  3. by Courtney Sperlazza on March 8, 2012  2:41 pm Reply

    We need more like you, who get their stories out there one way or another. Women all over are listening!

    • by Kristi on March 8, 2012  9:45 pm Reply

      Thank you so much, Courtney! If I can get just one woman to start performing monthly breast self-exams, I'll feel like I've accomplished something. :)

  4. by angie on March 8, 2012  3:35 pm Reply

    Your optimistic attitude and willingness to share your journey with us is beautiful. Thinking of you as you get ready to see the specialist!

    • by Kristi on March 8, 2012  9:51 pm Reply

      Thank you so much, Angie!

  5. by Amarie on March 8, 2012  8:36 pm Reply

    Thank you for sharing and for encouraging us, as women, to do what we need, in order to look out for ourselves and our health.

    • by Kristi on March 8, 2012  9:52 pm Reply

      Thank you so much, Amarie! I'm hoping that through my story, at least one woman will be inspired to start performing monthly breast self-exams. :)

  6. by Paula Kiger on March 9, 2012  5:51 am Reply

    Put this situation on the list of "things it would be far preferable not to deal with," right? As with everyone else, I am so appreciative of your willingness to share in order for other women to be in better health - it takes a sacrifice to lay it all out there. I will be sending you lots of support and love from Florida.

    • by Kristi on March 9, 2012  8:06 pm Reply

      Absolutely! I could totally do without this right now, but I don't get to pick and choose and determine how easy my life will be. lol Thanks so much for your support, Paula. It means so much to me. :)

  7. by alexa on March 9, 2012  6:05 am Reply

    Ahh really sorry to hear this Kristi :( Be strong and things will turn out good...we are with you!!! ;)

    • by Kristi on March 9, 2012  8:07 pm Reply

      Thank you so much, Alexa!

  8. by Ihilani on March 9, 2012  12:37 pm Reply

    Wow Krisit! Tough, tough, tough. You've been such a great example of taking care of yourself over the last several months, from breast exams to adopting a healthier lifestyle through diet and exericise. I'm so inspired by all that you've done and shared! All the best to you moving forward.

    • by Kristi on March 9, 2012  8:08 pm Reply

      Aw, thanks Ihilani! You're so sweet. :)

  9. by Gina on March 10, 2012  6:17 pm Reply

    You know I have the prayers going in overdrive for you! I love that you are sharing this & keeping us all up on our own exams!

  10. by Becca - Our Crazy Boys on March 11, 2012  9:55 pm Reply

    I'm so proud that you're using this as a teaching moment. It's so important to do monthly self exams, and something that is so easy to overlook.

  11. by Julie on March 12, 2012  5:48 am Reply

    I wish I was as strong as you! As a matter of fact, every time I self-examine myself in the shower, I am threatened, and I fear of the day when I might find a lump...

  12. by alissa apel on March 14, 2012  4:54 pm Reply

    My oldest sister has what you have. She gets cysts often. She's adopted, so I'm not sure if it's genetic with her.

    I imagine it probably can happen with a lot of people, not always on the breast. My younger sister, mom, grandpa and I all get cysts on our heads. It's annoying, uncomfortable and they feel weird when you're running your fingers through your hair or brushing. In our case it must be genetic. I have cousins and aunts that have them to. Not attractive. They don't even say you should get them removed.

    I hope you never get cancer! I hope it's just one of those things you just get once in a blue moon!

  13. by Esther Suarez on March 14, 2012  5:11 pm Reply

    Hi.. Im soo happy and relive i fund this website.. I have the same disease and it took me 5 visits to diferent doctors and 2 mammograms to find out i have it.. Im glad is not cancer.. But my is severe and very very painfull... I discover my first lumb when i was 16.. Im 22 now and the pain is getting worst with the time..

  14. by Linda on March 18, 2012  10:42 pm Reply

    I haven't really been sharing it on my blog, but I just went through a similar experience myself. The doctors found a fibroadenoma tumor in my right breast about 4 months ago, but it was really large so they decided to remove it. So last Wednesday I went through surgery to have it removed & now I'm still recovering. I'm only 25 & I'm a law student, so needless to say this was more stress than I could really handle right now. Good luck with everything & I'm sure everything will turn out good for you :)

  15. Pingback : Meeting with a Breast Specialist and Decisions, Decisions, Decisions {My Breast Lump Journey} | Live and Love...Out Loud

  16. by Miranda on August 4, 2012  2:48 am Reply

    So I have the same thing and I'm 17. I have 2 tumors in my left breast and I'm so scared to have surgery. My doctors told me that I don't have to go through surgery but If they bother me that I should. My family also tells me to have surgery but its so hard going through with it. I need help choosing wether I should go through the surgery and If it would be better to do it now then when I get older.

    • by Kristi on August 5, 2012  11:24 pm Reply

      I'm so sorry to hear that, Miranda. I can certainly relate to what you're going through. I was 18 years old when I discovered the first mass in my breast. I opted to have it removed and ended up finding another mass 20 years later. I had that one removed as well. It was the right decision for me and one that I do not regret. Wishing you the very best...

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