Compulsive hoarding is a mental disorder that is just beginning to be understood. As a hoarder, I have acquired things over the years with a specific purpose in mind at the time of the acquisition, used some of those items for their intended purposes, forgotten the goal for different objects, but now that I find that they have outlived their purpose in my life I am struggling to rid myself of those same things.

You can read the start of my journey here.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

My rant for the day. I'll try not to make it a habit. :)

I refuse to even think about it until Monday. Ok. So I'll probably be thinking about it on Sunday night, but I refuse to let the upcoming doctor's appointment rule my thoughts and my life. But I am a bit irritated.

I didn't read yesterday's mail until this morning. There was a letter from the imaging company who did the mammogram congratulating me on a 'normal' mammogram. It said nothing at all about the ultrasound. It did have the disclaimer that my doctor may still request extra testing or an examination by a breast specialist even with a normal mammogram.

That isn't the irritating part. I get that. I really do. But what irritates me is that they sent me something that said that my mammogram was totally NORMAL, but they sent totally different information to my doctor that said that a malignant neoplasm could not be ruled out. I don't equate that with 'normal' findings.

After I wrote my blog yesterday and spoke with an online friend who is a breast cancer survivor, I felt much better. Not quite afraid of what was under the bed. I feel much better knowing that I'll be getting answers soon - one way or the other. I'll be able to deal with whatever those answers end up being. Worrying won't change the results one way or the other, so I'm not going to stress over it.

The thing that really irritates me about this letter is it's irresponsibility. I'm sure that the vast majority of cases like mine end up being nothing. Just a temporary glitch in one's body. But what about those cases in the minority? Those cases where the patient gets the finding of a normal mammogram and don't follow up with their doctors. Those cases where the doctors go on vacation, and they don't read the report before they leave. Those cases where there actually is cancer, and it isn't caught, because some imaging company sent out findings of a normal mammogram.

How hard is it to just be honest in the letter? "Your mammogram *appeared* normal, but given the circumstances, the test could not rule out cancer. Please follow up with your doctor for further testing"? Which I guess in some ways is what the letter said, but it said it in such vague terms. They should do patients a favor and not sugar coat things.

They shouldn't open the letter with, "We are pleased to inform you that the results of your recent mammography examination are NORMAL", if they're sending a letter to your doctor saying that they can't rule out cancer.

What a bunch of hogwash!

Rant finished.


  1. Send a copy of what you just wrote to the mammogram provider, and a second copy addressed to the doctor who read the results. His or her name should be on the report, if not, ask for it.

    They need to hear stuff like this.

  2. I'm so confused as to why they'd send you a letter saying it was normal!

  3. I agree! they need to get their story straight,Better that they send you nothing than to send such mixed messages

  4. I agree w/Ami. People's lives depend on accurate information. What if you had read that first letter and thought everything was fine and it wasn't? And you didn't get treatment? I'd like to think someone, somewhere would eventually contact you's hard to believe that sometimes.

    Praying you have an encouraging appointment next week!

  5. Ami...I will be sending a letter and also bringing it to my own doctor's attention.

    BN...Imagine my confusion!

    Fern...I agree completely!

    mrs.b...Exactly! Something similar actually happened to my aunt and a friend.

    My aunt had battled colon cancer successfully, but she was told that they 'got it all' and she was 'cured'. Even though she asked about it over the years, she never pushed, because the doctor kept reassuring her. It was so advanced by the time it was found the second time that she only had weeks to live. It was heartbreaking.

    And my friend had had ovarian cancer. Had the complete hysterectomy. Had done everything she could think of to make sure it wouldn't come back. She felt horrible for several years, but the doctors wouldn't take her seriously, because she was obese. She'd asked for the blood test, the CA 125, but the doctors kept poo pooing it. Over the course of the years, she went to 5 or 6 different doctors. When this doctor saw her, he confirmed that her cancer had come back. She was gone within 6 months.

    I will definitely be writing a letter. It's just such irresponsible medicine to do this.


Welcome to The Closet. Feel free to take off your coat, hang it up, if you can find the space, and sit a spell. I just love your visits. :)