It’s not cancer

On Monday I had an MRI of my shoulder. On my trip to Ottawa in May I had noticed a lump on my shoulder. I freaked out, had a physical exam where they said it was a lipoma (fat pocket). The problem is, I kept getting tendonitis in my shoulder. Physical therapy wasn’t helping it. So, I saw an orthopedic surgeon for an assessment. He ordered an MRI.

This was the first time I was doing an MRI that wasn’t about cancer. I was still afraid of scansiety. In many ways, the ordering of scans can cause anxiety. It is in part about the waiting for results, and the worry of the results. But even more, it is about the memory of previous scans (someone else blogged about this, but I cannot find it – if you did leave a comment and I’ll link to your post).

My point is, that when I went into the MRI, I was very aware of how I was feeling. I was aware of the possibility of anxiety – and where that might actually be coming from. I’m happy to report that I didn’t have any anxiety. Actually, the MRI was mostly a non-event. The tech didn’t do much to prepare me – perhaps because he thought I had lots of experience with MRIs already? I don’t know, but I think he would have forgotten to give me ear plugs had I not asked for them! The MRI took about 25 minutes … after the first two scans (about 2 minutes each) I actually fell asleep – yup – I took a nap during all the whirring, clicking, and banging …

The tech said the doctor would be able to read the scans immediately. The next morning, I sent off an email to the doctor asking for a short summary of the results. I needed to hear that it wasn’t cancer – part of me was thinking that cancer had spread everywhere – so I wanted to know. I’m happy to report that it is not cancer … yup, now I have a scan that confirms it. I do, however, have a tear in the labrum. In a couple of weeks, I have a follow-up appointment with the orthopedic surgeon to talk about how one might treat this. Most importantly, it is not cancer!

  • Becky


  • Becky,

    First and foremost… I’m so glad it’s not cancer. When I get those scans I always say, “Be 9” (benign) is my favorite number! I hope the treatment for the labrum tear is an easy fix. I’m glad they gave you earplugs for the MRI. Those machines are loud and I can’t believe you took a nap. Love it!

    I enjoy your posts, Becky, and know that you have been very instrumental in inspiring me to start my blog so if I haven’t said so before…. Thank You!

    Take care!

  • Fantastic news!

    Interesting how some conditions that in themselves can seem stressful or problematic take entirely different levels of meaning when in different contexts?

    Again, fantastic news!

  • I am happy about your results!!

    I don’t like MRI’s and every scan/test makes me nervous now. A level of denial was taken away from us, when we were originally diagnosed with cancer, and so we can no longer lie to ourselves (or stay “positive” as many people expect us to be). But we do what we have to do and continue to take one day at a time.

    I hope you recover quickly and smoothly.

  • Great news! So happy for you about your results.

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