My hump, my hump, my hump, my lovely little lumps—Check it out!

Fergie says it all.

December is usually a busy month for most people.   It is the holidays, between parties and other things the month seems to fly by.  In addition December is exam month for my students, so there is a lot of prep, as well as grading.  Bülent had a business trip to Prague for a week and then after that we had a trip to Vienna planned for Christmas, WHEE!

So that made the health issue that popped up inconvenient, as well as unwelcome.  Several weeks ago, I found a lump in one of my breasts.  Well, actually, Bülent found it, as he tends to be more vigilant in investigating them.  Considering the history of hormonal cancers in my family, neither one of us was pleased with the development.  I called my gynecologist and she sent me  to the lab for a sonogram.  If the sonogram did show any issues she told me she would refer me to a general surgeon, which is the typical protocol in Turkey.  She was very helpful, she offered to make the lab appointment for me if I was concerned about language barriers.  I also have her cell phone number, since her secretary doesn’t speak English.  If I have questions or concerns or need to make an appointment I am able to call my doctor directly. 

We were eager to get the situation resolved.  However, we did feel relieved when other symptoms popped up, which indicated it was not a serious health risk.  One of my breasts was sore and swollen.  It was twice the size as the other and looked like a lopsided boob job.  It was very uncomfortable.  Poor Bülent, the week before he leaves on a business trip, the playground was closed.  We hurried to arrange all of the appointments and tests to be done before Bülent headed off to Prague, in case I needed support and translation help.   

So the day after we found the lump, Bülent and I headed to the lab. He was great, made the appointment for me, then came in the exam room and translated for me.  Turns out it was not just one lump, but several in both breasts.   They told us most likely they were just cysts, but the lab recommended sending me to the general surgeon since one of the lumps was so large.   The surgeon had a great reputation, and seemed to deserve it.  He reassured me it was  fibrocystic breast syndrome and nothing to worry about, though he did send samples to the lab just to make sure.  Actually I was really impressed.  He aspirated it with a needle, I did research and in the U.S. it says that they numb the area with lidocaine, then guide the needle in with a sonogram.  However, my doctor just covered the whole area in iodine, explored a little bit with his fingers, and slid the needle right in.  I was a little surprised at his nonchalance, but then was more surprised that it didn’t hurt AT ALL!  Clearly the man knew his stuff!  It was a big needle, but no pinch or sting the whole time!

The tests all came back clear, but he wants to see in a few months just to check.  I have to say, I was very pleased with all of the care I received, from the gyno returning my call at 7 p.m. on Saturday night, and the lab, fitting me in after work, and the expertise of the doctor.   We were both relieved that the lump turned out to be nothing.  It made our upcoming vacation seem all the more special, a celebration of Christmas, love and health.  Especially love!

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