Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I interrupt my regularly scheduled program to tell you I was a doctor.

No, it was not any type of sexual harassment. 

For those who know me, even a little, you know I am not a big hugger.  I don't mind hugs.  The kind where you see someone or are saying goodbye and you give a quick "great to see you" kind of hug.  Lingering hugs, though, and I start to feel my skin crawl.  I also like to know the hug is coming.

I haven't shared on my blog that a little over a month ago I found a lump in my right breast.  A big ass lump.  Big enough that I wasn't even looking when I found it.  I was sitting on our couch without a bra on, which is pretty normal for me if it's after 8:00pm.  I moved to do something and the inside of my arm rubbed the lateral (outside close to my armpit area) portion of my boob and I felt the lump rub on my arm.  It was that big.  When I looked, I could see it. 

So I went through all the medical hoops.  First my GYN, who said, "Oh.  That's big," and she sent me for a mammogram, sonogram and with the cards for a couple of breast surgeons.  So off I went for testing, where the radiologist told me I had an "unidentified mass" and some abnormally enlarged lymph nodes and she was recommending a image guided biopsy. Then to the breast surgeon.  About a week and half had gone by and it seemed the lump was getting smaller.  Or I was getting used to it, I wasn't sure.  I told the breast surgeon this and she said to trust my evaluation and she agreed, based on the measurements on the scans and feeling the lump that it seemed smaller.  She felt very comfortable that the lump was caused by secondary trauma of all that was going on in my arm.  Lots of lymph nodes in that area that were most likely doing the work of draining fluids and reducing swelling in my arm.  Sounded good to me.  She did say, if I didn't have the arm issue, I would be on the table getting a biopsy ASAP.  I was to come back in four weeks and for a follow up sonogram and if there was no change, the biopsy would be done right away.

As it turns out, the lump kept getting smaller and smaller.  I went to the doctor today and was happy to report I couldn't feel it.  She did the sonogram and didn't see anything.  No lump, no scar tissue, no nothing.  It's like it was never there.

At the end of the appointment she said she was thrilled to be sending me on my way and not seeing me again.  As she walked to the door, she opened her arms and gave me a hug.  I was caught a little off guard.  I don't think I have ever been hugged by a doctor.  The closest I have ever come to a hug was less than 24 hours after brain surgery #1 when my doctor came to see me in ICU.  He asked me how I felt and I said, "Like shit."  Once he recovered from that response, he touched my arm and said, "I promise you will feel better tomorrow."  THAT was as close as I have ever come to being hugged by a doctor. 

So I left the appointment without a lump and with a hug.  It was a good day.


  1. Jo I'm so happy the news turned out to be good. There has been quite a few good friends that have recently gone through what you have & thank god got a clean bill of health after a biopsy. I don't think they got a hug from their Dr. though. You are so right, Dr.'s generally don't give out hugs so your being healthy must of moved her. Just get's to the pt. that there is more often bad news than good.

    I'm sure you came home & hugged your men!?

  2. Great news!
    I'm with you on the lingering hug thing, but some hugs aren't so bad :)

  3. Girl, you made me cry.So thrilled it was just drainage.

    Even though that sounds totally nasty.

    Can you even imagine how happy the doctor was? How often does she get to deliver good news? She'll probably be talking about your drainage for weeks.

  4. Oh Jeez, you have had quite the past few months. What a rare doc. I am so glad that the lump went away. It is so interesting how the body works all together--no parts are isolated.

  5. Oh my gosh, Jo. Waiting on lump news is excruciating. Horrifying. I'm so sorry you had to go through that.

    And I'm glad you got a good hug from the doctor.

    Here's one from me ((())) That doesn't look like a hug. But it is one