Why every woman should know what a fibroadenoma is

We were walking down the road and my boyfriend put his arm around me. He felted it and my life changed forever.

A statue of a woman touching her chest
Photo by Victoria Strukovskaya on Unsplash

First, what is a fibroadenoma?

Fibroadenomas are common, benign (non-cancerous) breast tumors made up of both glandular tissue and stromal (connective) tissue. Fibroadenomas are most common in women in their 20s and 30s, but they can be found in women of any age. — cancer.org

How I met my first fibroadenoma

Actually, it was my boyfriend at the time who accidentally found it. I remember touching it, and I could only feel it really deeper in my right boob.

I knew that benign tumors are easily moved and this one seemed very stucked.

After the first ultrasound, the doctor told me it was a solid cyst and I had to come back after six months.

And after six months, I was there.

I’ll never forget: the silence in the room. After a long time, the doctor (a different one) finally said: Do you have any cases of breast cancer in your family?

I think my world stopped at that moment. He said that I had to do a biopsy, and that was it.

Two weeks without talking, moving, smiling, waiting for the worst scenario.

As I couldn’t wait two weeks, I decided to go for a specialist, a mastologist.

I remember walking into the office crying, and seeing a friendly face and hearing a calm voice.

So, what happened?, he asked.

I told him the story and finally showed him the ultrasound.

It’s a friboadenoma, dear. — he said, with a gentle smile on his face, so sure of himself.

But the other doctor said it was a bad aspect, and that is a solid cyst, and it’s in a vertical position, and I’ve to do a biopsy.

He smiled again. No, you don’t. You don’t need any biopsy. Cancer breasts are not like that.

Are you 100% sure?

Well, in medicine, nothing it’s 100% sure. But, yes, I’m 99,9% sure.

But — he continued — you have to do the biopsy. You’re too far anxious and you’ll not trust my words. Let me just tell you that is a invasive procedure and you really don’t need it.

Of course I did it, anyway.

Turns out I don’t have only one lump — I have three of them! At first, they scared the hell out of me, and now I know they don’t mean to hurt me.

What I learnt with this experience

  • When the things get complicated, go to an specialist;
  • Try to be calm. In most cases, the worst scenario doesn’t happen;
  • Trust your doctor, but remember a second opinion doesn’t hurt;
  • Don’t make invasive procedures you don’t need.

Looking at some facts:

  • Fibroadenomas are one of the most common benign tumors of the breast in women under 30 years of age.
  • In the adolescent population, the overall incidence of fibroadenoma is 2.2%.
  • Fibroadenomas tend to shrink after a woman goes through menopause.
  • The incidence of a carcinoma evolving within a fibroadenoma was reported to be 0.002% to 0.0125%.

As you can see, they are perfectly normal and mostly inoffensive. However, I know it can be overwhelming to feel something on your breast.

And it is — believe me, I struggled for a long time… but I guess it has more to accept your body and its flaws that any other thing.

Important note: this is only my story and an attempt to comfort someone who might be passing through this process. I’m not a doctor, so please don’t forget to clarify all your doubts with who knows best.

Anyway, I hope this article finds you well. Don’t be scared. 💛

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I don’t like tea and I have great eyebrows.

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Paula Sá

Paula Sá

I don’t like tea and I have great eyebrows.

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