I should have written this post weeks ago and I apologize for my slack. Thank you all for your prayers and words of encouragement! I had my biopsy and found that it was a benign “galactocele” which is basically a big word for a clogged milk duct. Hooray! Despite what many doctors warned, I have continued breastfeeding my son without a hitch. However, it was no easy task to find a doctor who was willing to work with me in order to minimize complications.
After three consultations, I found a doctor who was willing to start with a fine needle aspiration and work up to a radial cut (as opposed to lateral – doing greater damage to the milk ducts). I encourage any one going through this same situtation to ask your doctor a lot of questions and don’t hesitate getting a second, third and even fourth opinion. In my case, I decided on a younger, female surgeon – one that just weaned her son. She was empathetic and willing to try new techniques that would minimize breastfeeding complications.
On a positive note, since I am one of the (apparent) rare few that had a biopsy while breastfeeding, I had the opportunity to participate in a breast milk study through the University of Massachusetts. Below is an explanation of the study, in their own words:
Our hope is that by examining molecular changes in cells found in breastmilk associated with various breast problems, we will be able to develop a specific, individualized tool for assessing an individual woman’s risk of contracting this disease.
Knowledge of the molecular changes in the breast cells that occur may be helpful in developing preventative and therapeutic strategies for all women.
I simply sent them a sample of breastmilk (they made this very easy) and will follow up with my biopsy report. I was glad to be a part and I’m writing this so other women in the same situation can perhaps do the same!