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What Would You Do? (Cyst in Breast)
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Published: 15 years ago

What Would You Do? (Cyst in Breast)

I am 41 years old and have a rather large cyst in my right breast. It's been there for close to 2 months. It was soft, but has gotten a little harder in the last couple of weeks. It also moves slightly when firmly touched.

This isn't my first breast cyst or lump(I've also had several bartholin cysts in the past). When I was 21, a doctor examining me commented that I had lumpy breasts and explained to me that some women just do. He didn't seem alarmed and didn't cause any alarm in me...just said it rather matter of factly. Then, in my mid to late 20's a possible lump was detected during another routine doctor's visit (different doctor). I was referred to a specialist who did a sonogram, but wasn't able to detect anything. I was told that I was too young for a mammogram and nothing else ever became of the issue. Then, about 8 years ago, another doctor, detected a lump and recommended me for more tests. This was the first time I had a mammogram. The lump was seen in the mammogram, but after running more and more tests, the verdict was still out on what it was. I didn't have health insurance and the tests were getting rather pricey (only to return inconclusive), so I quit going and didn't worry about it. Then, about 4 years ago, I had another, quite large one in my left breast. Still, no health insurance, but a family member in the medical profession got me in to see a doctor friend of hers who gave me a full exam, including mammogram at no cost. She was quite concerned and, in the same day, decided to do a biopsy (none of the others had done this). As soon as she cut into the cyst, fluid began to drain and the cyst deflated. She was very pleased and told me this was a good sign. She still took a tissue sample to test, but was far less concerned since the cyst completely drained. I never went back for the test results (they couldn't give them to me by phone or mail and the doctor was quite a distance from my home and I never took the drive back for the results. I figured if it was serious, they would get the word to me).

I should also add that my mother continuously went through the same issues and each alarming doctor's visit had almost the same result...nothing. She also quit going to the doctor and is 65 years young and in pretty good health.

Now, as stated, I have another very large cyst in my right breast. Should I go to the doctor again (still no health insurance) just to find out what it is? Or should I assume it's the same as before (fluid) and self-treat? My issue is that, even for them to conclude that it's fluid, they'll have to cut or puncture and I'm really not with the whole process. Plus I absolutely HATE painful mammograms and all the waiting for test results. It's such a long, slow, painful process.

On the other hand, if it is something more serious, I need to be able to identify to know how to treat it. But I really don't think it is serious and I really can't afford all of the expensive tests if it turns out to be nothing.

Ugh, decisions!

What would you do?

I'm posting this on several forums, because I really don't know where it belongs. Please forgive me if it lands in the wrong place.

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