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Paget's disease of the breast?
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hockeymom412 posted:
Hi there ... My name is Ellen. I am 39, a mother of two, and a hockey mom There is no history of breast cancer in my family.

I have had skin flaking off about a quarter of my left nipple since probably September. I went to my PCM, a DO, the day after Thanksgiving and he suggested I use hydrocortisone cream for a few weeks, and if it didn't clear up that I should go see a dermatologist. He thought it was a skin issue, not any sort of breast tissue involvement.

I sort of blew it off, didn't really worry about it. And yesterday I came across the dermatologist's business card, so I called and I have an appointment on 14 February. Then, I happened to search the web for "nipple skin flaking" and find out that there may be something else entirely going on.

The hydrocortisone didn't help at all. The skin is still flaking off. The texture of the areola in that part has also changed. It's a little red, too. And only one breast is involved. I also have been through a course of antibiotics for a dog bite on my hand in late December. And now that I think about it, I remember sending several texts to a friend complaining that my breast was itchy.

I called my PCM back to see if I can get a referral to a breast specialist, and the nurse told me that she thought the doctor would still want me to see a dermatologist first because it's a skin issue, but she said she was going to pass along the phone message.

So, that's my story. As it stands now, I have an appointment 3 weeks from tomorrow.

Any recommendations of how else to proceed? Do I demand a biopsy from the derm? Do I fight to get seen by a breast specialist? Is there any reason to continue using the hydrocortisone, which hasn't worked?

I have a friend who said that he doesn't know anyone who has successfully diagnosed themselves via Google. I hope I get to prove him right, but these symptoms are eerily similar ...
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rachael67 responded:
Ellen, I am so sorry to hear you are having a problem, but am very glad that you are not just letting it go!

I would do my best to get a referral to a breast care center...It seems to me that you might very well be dealing with some sort of breast problem and not a skin problem. If the breast center determines that is not the case, you can always then go to that dermatologist. Usually with skin troubles time is not quite so essential.

As far as a biopsy, don't leap there as yet. Wait to find out just what a specialist may say.

Please know that we are sending much good thoughts your direction. And do let us know how you are doing.

Blessings.
Rachael
Just when the caterpillar thought her world was over, she became a butterfly! Don't give up five minutes before the miracle!!
 
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brcansur responded:
Hello and welcome,
I agree with Rachael you need to get into a breast care center and get that breats checked out it does sound like a breast issue. You could call a breast care center and see if you can be seen without the referral tell them what is going on and go from there. OR call the doctors office that you have the appt with and let them know what is going on and that things are getting worse not better and could they move your appt up. Let them know you are concerned it maybe a breast issue and not skin but your PCM wanted you to see them first they may move you up sooner. You are the only one that is going to speak up for you and be your advocate when it comes to your body and your health. But in the meantime please try and keep your mind busy with things you enjoy and try not to worry yourself crazy. I know it is easier said then done I have been there. Try doing things like watch a movie, read a book, go shopping, hang out with family or friends anything that makes you happy and helps you relax and get your mind off of it all. Do something that makes you laugh and just be you don't worry till you have to god knows we do enough worrying in a days time we don't need more. RIGHT!!
Ok Now go have some fun with those children hockymom bake some cookies and pop some popcorn watch a good movie and just have FUN!!!!
Have a great day angel hugs Roberta,
Roberta
 
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hockeymom412 responded:
I heard back from my PCM. I am going to be seen by a breast specialist on Monday. Thank God.
 
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brcansur replied to hockeymom412's response:
That is great news I am so happy for you now hopefully that will ease some of your worries and you can have a nice weekend. We have what we call Pinkie the bus and we all get together and go with you in spirit to all appointments so I will be on Pinkie and with you for your appt on Mon. So if things get stressfull or you feel the nerves getting to you just think someone is right there beside you holding your hand and whispering in your ear it will be all right. Take a nice deep calming breath in and out again in and out till you feel nice and calm even close your eyes if you have to. Just imagine a arm around your shoulders a gental rub on the arm when you need it just to help calm the nerves that is what we are here for to comfort each other when we need it to be there no matter what good luck on Mon. Just think this is a breast Doctor so they will know what to look for so get the questions you want to ask ready write them down and bring them with you. Also bing paper and pen to write down what they tell you if possible bring someone with you or a recorder so you have a way to get all the onfo that is given. I found that I only heard about half if that of what was being said it was just a lot all at once and my nerves took over. I had someone with me for all my appts and wrote everything down. I even asked the dr's for a copy of what we talked about in writing because I could not remember it all. They were all very nice and did give reports in writing of what we went over or siad it slow enough so I could write it down in my note book.
I am sorry it must seam like I am writing a book but just trying to give you tips on what to expect and what may help you out. I hope this has helped you and that everything works out and it is just something crazy like a rare skin rash or allergy to something.
I do have a friend that had the same thing and she also had leaking but never had children till about 1 1/2 years after all of this. It turned out the one of her glands was over producing something can't remember the name of it and she also has a bad case of dry skin and allergies. So it did turn out to not be anything really bad but they have to keep an eye on that over active gland and do mammo's once a year. I dodn't know why I just thought of this maybe this will bring you more hope
Have a greta weekend angel hugs Roberta,
Roberta
 
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jenna291 replied to brcansur's response:
Glad you are going to see your specialist on Monday. I know how nervous you can be while waiting for results.

Bring a notebook so you can write down questions and info your doc gives you.

I wish you much good luck and hope you come back and let us know what is going on.

jenna
 
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hockeymom412 responded:
Thanks for the kind words, ladies.

I have a notebook ready to go for the meeting. I have written down all of the important info already, and I have started a list of questions. One of my neighbors is going to go with me so she will help take notes.

I will definitely come back and update after the appointment.

 
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hockeymom412 responded:
So now I don't know if I am making myself crazy, but I feel a jelly-bean sized lump under the nipple. Great ... <insert eyeroll here> lol.
 
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brcansur replied to hockeymom412's response:
I am so sorry that you are feeling a lump now and I know that can't be a good feeling for you, just another worry most likely. But now lets think of it this way ok , you are seeing a breast care doctor Mon so how about you just take a break from checking your breast till you see that doctor. You deserve a little break from it all some down time some you time just take a few nice calming breaths and let it all go for now. I know it isn't easy but please do try for you and your family just for now anyway. Let the doctor do their job on Mon they will check everything out and let you know what they feel and find. You ask away did they feel anything? did they find anything ? what do they feel it may be and so on.
I am so glad you have someone going with the other set of ears really does help oh I know because you think you got it all but you really don't. Plus just for that extra support while waiting to go in and while your in there it does help alos. If they want you to go in alone tell them you would much rather have your friend in with you at all times. That is what I did and they have to let them in with you that is your right. I wish you all the best and please try and relax with your family over the weekend it will be all right. Plus we are here for you any time for that extra support hang in there stay strong you can and will get through this. Angel hugs Roberta,
Roberta
 
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hockeymom412 responded:
I just got home from the appointment. The doctor doesn't think it's Paget's because there isn't any nipple involvement, just on the areola, but he wanted to be sure so he did a punch biopsy. I should have results by Friday. And I have an RX for a mammogram as well.

So hopefully it's nothing. I am glad he is being thorough. He told me to keep the dermatology appointment that I have in a couple of weeks.


So, I will update as I hear things.
 
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brcansur replied to hockeymom412's response:
Hello, sorry I din't get back to you sooner that is great news that the doctors doesn't feel it is Pagets doing the happy dance for you.
I am so happy this doctor is being very on top of things and checking everything out and doing test to make sure there is nothing else going on that is a good doctor. It is also a very good idea to keep that other appt with the skin doctor I agree. I am keeping my fingers crossed for you that all comes back good on Fri and that it is all just some kind of skin thing going on. Try and have a great week with your family and not worry your self crazy ok !? I know it isn't easy but try you did get some great news at that appt on Mon so go with that and just have a blast till Fri Again I am so happy for you and sending loads of angel hugs and best wishes for Fri Roberta,
Roberta
 
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hockeymom412 responded:
OK -- The report was "No evidence of malignancy. Evidence of early seborrheic keratosis."

So, it appears to be a skin thing, and the breast surgeon still wants me to get a mammogram, which I am scheduled for on 11 Feb, and I will see a dermatologist on 14 February.

I don't know if seborrheic keratosis can really even be treated. There's no history of it in my family, and I find it strange that the only place I have it is on part of one areola.

So I will wait and see what the derm says on the 11th ...

I am supposed to call the breast surgeon back on Monday to see how the punch biopsy site is healing. To me, it doesn't look like it's healed at all. They want me to check back in with them on Monday.

Thanks for all of you kind words
 
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brcansur replied to hockeymom412's response:
Hello hockeymom, I am so happy that your news is such great news and it is a skin thing. Now go take a nice deep breath and have a great weekend. heck a great week ahead of you see what the skin doctor has to say and put all this worring behind you. Now on the healing thing sometime it takes a while you have to think that part of our body is covered up most of the time not getting much air to dry up and heal as fast. So keep it clean and dry it will heal. Make sure it isn't wet, red or swollen or any discharge coming out of it and it should be fine. But if any of those things are happening call your doctor and have it checked sooner. But you have to remember everyone heals different some faster then others and each surgery is different also. Believe me I know I have been right where you are now it seamed like forever but it was really only about a week and it started to heal but about 2 to 3 weeks before it was really healing all the way. The black and blue from it seamed like forever though. But again everyone is different so just give it some time and see what the doctor has to say when you go back for the follow up. I wish you all the best and good luck with skin doctor and finding out what to do about the skin problem. Try and have a great weekend angel hugs Roberta,
Roberta
 
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