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Thread: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
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    56

    Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    So, itís my annual mammogram coming up next Monday. This will mark my 9th year since being diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 35. To say Iím not finding it any easier is an understatement. The strange thing is when I did have cancer I coped really well and know I could do it again, itís just the thought of it coming back is crippling.

    Iím trying to look for some ways of seeing this annual testing as a positive thing. I keep thinking I donít want to go for the mammogram but that would just be silly and cause me more anxiety in the long run.

    I donít want to spend the next week worrying as it wonít make any difference to the outcome!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Posts
    837

    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Hi Deb,
    I could tell you not to worry about it, forget about it until next Monday and just get it over and done with when the day comes. But I guess if we could all think logically like that then half of us wouldn't be on this forum

    But look, you had a mammogram a year ago and presumably you got the all clear then. A doctor once told me that mammos can pick up changes about 12 months before a lump is even felt. So they pick things up very very early.
    So even if the worst did happen on Monday (and I'm not suggesting for a minute that it will), you know it will be something that was caught very early. So it's definitely best to get it done.

    Because you had breast cancer before then it's obvious your anxiety is going to be high at the moment. Be kind to yourself and I would say to allow yourself some little bit of anxiety rather than try to completely get rid of it. Try to distract yourself as best you can between now and then. If you have to, pick a worry time period each day and try to postpone your worry until that time. I do this sometimes and if I'm able to do it it's a brilliant technique.

    I really hope everything goes well for you on Monday, and there's no reason it won't. Keeping everything crossed for you

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
    Posts
    56

    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Quote Originally Posted by BrokenGirl View Post
    Hi Deb,
    I could tell you not to worry about it, forget about it until next Monday and just get it over and done with when the day comes. But I guess if we could all think logically like that then half of us wouldn't be on this forum

    But look, you had a mammogram a year ago and presumably you got the all clear then. A doctor once told me that mammos can pick up changes about 12 months before a lump is even felt. So they pick things up very very early.
    So even if the worst did happen on Monday (and I'm not suggesting for a minute that it will), you know it will be something that was caught very early. So it's definitely best to get it done.

    Because you had breast cancer before then it's obvious your anxiety is going to be high at the moment. Be kind to yourself and I would say to allow yourself some little bit of anxiety rather than try to completely get rid of it. Try to distract yourself as best you can between now and then. If you have to, pick a worry time period each day and try to postpone your worry until that time. I do this sometimes and if I'm able to do it it's a brilliant technique.

    I really hope everything goes well for you on Monday, and there's no reason it won't. Keeping everything crossed for you
    Thank you so much for the reply. I know youíre right. Thatís a great idea about having a worry time, hopefully it will help stop the thoughts ruining my day.

    As you say, worse case scenario any cancer would be picked up early.

    Thanks again.

  4. #4

    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Deb said it all and very well. Just know that we are here hoping and/or praying for your happy all clear post when the results come in.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
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    56

    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Quote Originally Posted by Crh371 View Post
    Deb said it all and very well. Just know that we are here hoping and/or praying for your happy all clear post when the results come in.
    Thank you x

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
    Posts
    56

    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    So I had my mammogram today and everything was ok according to the radiologist. However, I canít be happy! I was looking at the scans after the mammograms were done and started freaking out over some white spots I saw. The radiographer assured me that this was normal calcium deposits and very common. Nothing to worry about.

    The radiologist then compared my scans to last year and said everything is fine. Why canít I just accept what theyíve said?!!! Part of me thinks they are wrong and I feel sick thinking of this calcium and what if it develops into cancer!!

    Iím driving myself mad, Iím not medically trained, so what do I know about white spots on mammograms!! Iíve wound myself up for weeks over this scan and now itís done I should be happy.

  7. #7
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    Apr 2003
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    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Maybe time to treat the HA?
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
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    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Quote Originally Posted by nomorepanic View Post
    Maybe time to treat the HA?
    Definitely but I donít know whatís left to do that I havenít already tried. Currently on sertraline, been through CBT and various counsellors.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
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    14,028

    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Start by not looking at the scans yourself? Let the experts do it? Those white dots are microcalcifications which I have along with many others. The comparison between this year's and last year's scans is the important thing and you've received very good and reassuring news.

    Why can't you believe what you are being told? Because you believe your HA mind chatter more than the assessment of the medical professionals looking at your scans.

    It's such a shame when you should be celebrating good news. Why are you doing this to yourself?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2021
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    Re: Annual Mammogram, Extreme Anxiety

    Quote Originally Posted by pulisa View Post
    Start by not looking at the scans yourself? Let the experts do it? Those white dots are microcalcifications which I have along with many others. The comparison between this year's and last year's scans is the important thing and you've received very good and reassuring news.

    Why can't you believe what you are being told? Because you believe your HA mind chatter more than the assessment of the medical professionals looking at your scans.

    It's such a shame when you should be celebrating good news. Why are you doing this to yourself?
    Exactly! Why am I looking at scans that take years of training to read and interpret.

    Youíre completely right, Iím letting my HA mind take over.

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