BP, IVs and blood draws after bilateral breast cancer w/node removal

Posted by sandyjr @sandyjr, May 19, 2019

I have had bilateral breast cancer with lumpectomy (both breasts) and lymph nodes removed on both sides. My tumor markers have risen…10 points over 4 months and my oncologist wants me to have chest and abdomen CT scans. I asked if I would have to have an IV and for the chest one, I would. I told them that was a problem because I needed to protect myself from lymphedema. I asked if there was anywhere else they could do and IV, other than my arms or hands. They did not deny me having the upper CT scan, BUT they did give me the choice of only having the abdominal one…they said it was up to me. You can’t tell me that the arms and hands are the only places an IV can be done on the body! Basically they are saying that if I do not want an IV, then I will not get the upper body CT scan. So, not only am I worried about the tumor marker stuff, I am scared to death of having an IV. My ca27.29 increased from 38.5 to 49 in 4 months. My former oncologist told me that my ca 27.29 seems to be set at around 40. Also, when I had the blood drawn for the test as well as the CMP, the technician stuck my feet 4 times,collected that blood and finally went with my hand to finish. I was dehydrated. I am waiting for the results of the second opinion on the ca27.29…I insisted on having it redone. This tech was excellent…did it in my hand with no tourniquet. It’s not bad enough having cancer twice already,..now I am scared to death I have it again. My first cancer was DCIS, the second was IDC….no lymph node involvement with either. I need opinions on all this! I am afraid.

Hi. I have gone thrum lumpectomy and lymph node removal as well but I have never heard of "tumour markers". Once I completed chemo and radiation, my oncologists told me I didn't need to see them anymore and just to see my regular dr. I have a mammogram scheduled in September but reading all this stuff I'm starting to worry that I should still be seeing the oncologists. What do you think? Plus it's been about 10 months since my surgery and just in the last week or so my breast has been really sore especially when I wake up in the morning. It's quite warm to the touch and a bit hard. Should I be scared?

REPLY

Thank you for your reply. I hope I did not upset you with my question. I do not know whether either you or I should be scared…all I know is that I cannot seem to get this out of my mind. I do know a lot of doctors do not use tumor markers….there are blood tests for a few for breast cancer, but what I hear about most after starting treatment is the ca 27.29. My best friend had BC and her doctor told her he did not use tumor markers because they are not dependable and only upset the patient. People like you and I just do not know. The first time I had BC, I saw the oncologist every 4 months for 5 years. Then he said I did not have to see him anymore. I did not have chemo, but did have radiation both times. I am thinking I should not be panicking…and neither should you after reading my narrative. We are all very different and all the doctors do different stuff. I feel great and have no complaints…even taking anastrozole, so am really devastated about this. I am not so worried about the test…more so that I will get lymphedema from the IV. I think if you are having strange stuff happening with your breast, you may want to go to your doctor and have it checked out. Waiting until September will only give you more time to think about it and to worry. Let’s hope other people respond to this topic so we can get more information.

REPLY
@sandyjr

Thank you for your reply. I hope I did not upset you with my question. I do not know whether either you or I should be scared…all I know is that I cannot seem to get this out of my mind. I do know a lot of doctors do not use tumor markers….there are blood tests for a few for breast cancer, but what I hear about most after starting treatment is the ca 27.29. My best friend had BC and her doctor told her he did not use tumor markers because they are not dependable and only upset the patient. People like you and I just do not know. The first time I had BC, I saw the oncologist every 4 months for 5 years. Then he said I did not have to see him anymore. I did not have chemo, but did have radiation both times. I am thinking I should not be panicking…and neither should you after reading my narrative. We are all very different and all the doctors do different stuff. I feel great and have no complaints…even taking anastrozole, so am really devastated about this. I am not so worried about the test…more so that I will get lymphedema from the IV. I think if you are having strange stuff happening with your breast, you may want to go to your doctor and have it checked out. Waiting until September will only give you more time to think about it and to worry. Let’s hope other people respond to this topic so we can get more information.

Jump to this post

Thanx sandyjr. I have been feeling fairly well too and am on anastrozole. Few aches and pains but that could be old age lol. I will take your advice and if it isn't any better by the weeks end, I will see my gp. I hope everything goes well for you too. I hate this horrible thing that has affected our lives forever. I am on anti anxiety meds too which have helped a lot. I try to take one day at a time and thank God I wake up each morning. Peace and healthy karma sent your way.

REPLY
@karendb

Hi. I have gone thrum lumpectomy and lymph node removal as well but I have never heard of "tumour markers". Once I completed chemo and radiation, my oncologists told me I didn't need to see them anymore and just to see my regular dr. I have a mammogram scheduled in September but reading all this stuff I'm starting to worry that I should still be seeing the oncologists. What do you think? Plus it's been about 10 months since my surgery and just in the last week or so my breast has been really sore especially when I wake up in the morning. It's quite warm to the touch and a bit hard. Should I be scared?

Jump to this post

@karendb
My advice to you would be to see your breast surgeon or gynecologist. It could be radiation effect whereupon the breast tissue hardens and can be uncomfortable and your massaging may help. HOWEVER, since it is warm, you should have it be seen.

REPLY
@sandyjr

Thank you for your reply. I hope I did not upset you with my question. I do not know whether either you or I should be scared…all I know is that I cannot seem to get this out of my mind. I do know a lot of doctors do not use tumor markers….there are blood tests for a few for breast cancer, but what I hear about most after starting treatment is the ca 27.29. My best friend had BC and her doctor told her he did not use tumor markers because they are not dependable and only upset the patient. People like you and I just do not know. The first time I had BC, I saw the oncologist every 4 months for 5 years. Then he said I did not have to see him anymore. I did not have chemo, but did have radiation both times. I am thinking I should not be panicking…and neither should you after reading my narrative. We are all very different and all the doctors do different stuff. I feel great and have no complaints…even taking anastrozole, so am really devastated about this. I am not so worried about the test…more so that I will get lymphedema from the IV. I think if you are having strange stuff happening with your breast, you may want to go to your doctor and have it checked out. Waiting until September will only give you more time to think about it and to worry. Let’s hope other people respond to this topic so we can get more information.

Jump to this post

@sandyjr
The fear of lymphedema is quite real. Where my medical treatment is, they have a 4-week program for breast cancer patients of strength training in the physical therapy department. They believe by doing these exercises and simple exercises with weights that lymphedema can either be minimized during episodes or one not getting it at all. I've found that it helps some with the fatigue of the AIs. We also have 2 exercise studios that offer strength training programs to breast cancer patients for free of which I will be trying to get into after completion of this one. If it is possible, check with your medical facility to see if they have such a program or your community to see if any are offered. I wish you the very best.

REPLY
@trixie1313

@karendb
My advice to you would be to see your breast surgeon or gynecologist. It could be radiation effect whereupon the breast tissue hardens and can be uncomfortable and your massaging may help. HOWEVER, since it is warm, you should have it be seen.

Jump to this post

Yes I think I will. But it's weird. It hurts first thing in the morning when I sit up in bed or bend over to put on socks or whatever and then it doesn't hurt as the day goes on. Weird. Thank you for replying.

Liked by trixie1313

REPLY

Here are two related discussions that may interest those members following this discussion:
– Bilateral breast cancer w sentinel node removal: Lymphedema prevention https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/bilateral-breast-cancer-with-sentinel-node-removal/
– Tumor markers…CA 27.29 https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/tumor-markers-see-a-27-29/
– CA 15-3 cancer tumor marker https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/ca-15-3-cancer-tumor-marker/

REPLY
Please login or register to post a reply.