I saw my family doctor today. I'd wanted to give my doctor the long-term disability forms, and I also wanted copies of all the recent test results (including the CT scan). It took a while, but they finally got the CT results faxed over. I wasn't wrong in my interpretation of the technician's statement, I'm afraid - there is a "this" there, all right.
There is a 1cm x 0.6cm lesion on the right side of the sternum, and a second area on the left side of the sternum at the same level. Given everything, these are strongly suspicious for metastatic disease. Put another way, I almost certainly have cancer in my sternum. It's most likely that the cancer is breast cancer that has spread (aka "bone mets"). There is another possibility, though, and that is that the cancer is actually bone cancer that is a result of the radiation that I had before. Very rarely, radiation can cause new cancers, and at least one of these lesions is in the previous radiation field.
My family doctor wants a biopsy done so that we can determine whether it's breast or bone cancer. I agree with him, of course. We don't want to guess wrong, here - we have to know what kind of cancer this is. I see an oncologist on Wednesday, and hopefully he will also agree that a biopsy is needed. If not, then I'm sure that my family doctor (who I see Thursday) will arrange something :)
My doctor is also taking the pain in my sternum seriously. The aspirin helps a bit - I don't get the big spikes of pain anymore, but I still get a continual ache. So we're going to try Arthrotec. If that doesn't work, then we'll try something else. I've asked him to stay away from narcotic painkillers (I hate taking them), and he says that there's lots and lots to try before we have to revert to a narcotic.
With everything going on, I'm really tired. It will take time for me to process all of this, even though a lot of it is confirming what I already knew. It's more real and more scary to me now.