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To Anon: Breast Cyst with Debris

By HERWriter Guide August 4, 2011 - 9:29am
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Hi Anon!

Your question was read, answered, posted and then accidentally deleted - our apologies and please repost!

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EmpowHER Guest

I am not the original poster as my response will show. I frequently feel lumps in my arm pits that are always right below the surface then within a day are on the surface and rupture or disappear all together... Sunday morning I located 2 cysts in my arm pit on small one and one medium sized one... well the small one is still the size of a pea and the other one is now the size of a grape. I had an ultrasound today and it showed that i have a complex cyst. I see a Nurse Practitioner not an MD and she said it's nothing just to monitor it. However, I have a cousin fighting aggressive breast cancer, i lost a grandma to ovarian and an aunt to pancreatic. Additionally I've lost 28lbs in 2 month's (22 according to my NP)....... I feel like she is writing me off as paranoid that something's wrong because of my family hx but at the same time I have a right to be...and I am questioning her saying to just monitor it as I have read in multiple places a complex cyst should be biopsied... thoughts?

April 21, 2015 - 9:17pm
HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

Get a second opinion. It's good to question a doctor or NP. Some have egos the size of houses and don't like to be second guessed. Anon, this is your life and your body, I would certainly ask for a biopsoy. 

Losing 28 pound in two months is NOT normal unless you are actively trying to do so. Go with your gut, Anon, and get a second opinion. Second opinions can save lives. 

Please stay in touch with us! 


April 22, 2015 - 5:23am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Susan Cody)

Thank you.... I consulted the Dr. who oversees the NP and he and she both agreed to try taking Bactrim DS for 10 days... I am day 3 of Tx and zero change in size, redness, or pain really...and the skin started flaking like dry skin... When i mentioned the 28lb weight loss to my NP she shot me down and said it wasn't 28 because I had supposedly gained 3lbs since my last visit with her but I told her according to the scale I regularly use it is 28lbs it may even be more than that and I trust my scale more because it is frequently checked and calibrated so I know it's accurate (Its the one from work and they have to make sure it's accurate for patients weights). If I wake up tomorrow and still no change I'm going to call the Dr.'s Nurse and ask her if this is normal.. I feel stupid having to call and see if it's "normal" because I'm a nurse but I'm a new nurse so i still question a lot of things.

April 27, 2015 - 7:06pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I should not where the lump is... it is approximately 2 and 1/2 finger breath's below the top of my armpit, and closer to the front of the arm pit.... it's the size of a grape as well

April 27, 2015 - 7:16pm
EmpowHER Guest


I think I'm the person who asked the question, but it was today, not 11 hours ago. I had a routine mammogram in February, which was normal. A follow up ultrasound revealed a cyst that was filled with both liquid and debris. The radiologist at Yale Breast Center deemed it benign, but recommended a follow up ultrasound in 6 months. My sister is currently being treated for 4th stage metestatic breast cancer. I'm worried. Should I be??

August 4, 2011 - 5:35pm
HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi again

Thanks for the repost and we wish your sister the very best.

We can't tell you what to do in terms of a course of medical action but what we can tell you is this:

The good news is that most cysts are benign (nearly all of them are), and this cyst probably is too although there is a slightly raised risk when there is an immediate family member with a history of breast cancer which is the case with you.

Do they know that your sister has stage 4 cancer?

From a personal standpoint, I would press for more action and now - I would inform them of my sister's condition/stage and say you are very uncomfortable with a 6 month wait-and-see. That's all well and good for the radiologist to say but perhaps he/she is not aware of what's going on. I'd want this checked into now.

As to whether you should be worried - as I said, it's far more likely to be benign, but from the human aspect, this understandable worry should be put to rest sooner than later to give you peace of mind. If it's only a 6 month window - why not do it now?

I hope this gives you some guidance (my mother had terminal breast cancer in her 30s) and I veer on being proactive in situations like these rather than taking the general guidelines and standards.

Let me know what you think!


August 5, 2011 - 4:55am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Susan Cody)

My sister gets her treatment at Yale, and the folks there are very well aware of her circumstances. She's been receiving treatment there for the last 6 years, and is a walking miracle, as she was diagnosed 6 years ago at stage 4. It was in her bones when they found it. Over the years, it's traveled to her marrow, liver, and now to her lymph nodes, but they've successfully treated it all along with oral meds, the tumors disappearing or remaining stable, the marrow and blood returning to normal... until this last PET scan revealed lymph node involvement. But they now feel that since it was caught early, they have alternatives to treat this new development in the lymph nodes. She's had genetic testing, and it was negative, but I've been advised that genetic tests are only as good as the current knowledge we have about them. My 6 month check is due next month at Yale.
I notice that my breast hurts with too much caffeine and exersize (I'm a runner), and the pain seems to come and go depending on those factors. Hope I'm not just rationalizing here.
In any case, thanks for the prompt reply. I appreciate your efforts. This site is great!


August 5, 2011 - 5:46am
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