The Silent Scanxiety

There is a difference between general anxiety and scanxiety. Scanxiety is not about what might happen, it’s about what did happen. It’s not so much about worrying, it’s about remembering.

scanxiety breast cancer

Scanxiety… probably not an official word you will find in your typical dictionary, but it’s a word that is very real. The fear and anxiety that come with upcoming scans can be debilitating. When I was diagnosed nearly a year ago, some of the hardest moments were dealing with the stress during the scans and waiting for the results afterwards. They definitely took a toll on me physically and mentally. Being stuck in a tube with no one by your side, knowing the machine will basically be dictating your future, is a traumatising experience for sure – shaking but trying to stay still, crying but praying with all your heart, closing your eyes so tightly hoping it’s all just a bad dream but then opening them and realising you’re still stuck in that tube.

pet scan 

You go through life sometimes thinking you are invincible. When you feel sick, you go to the doctors – just to check it out – generally with the mentality that “it’s probably nothing”. When you go through a health crisis though, you start going to the doctors thinking the worst. It’s not that you become a negative person, it’s because you have experienced the worst and know that it can happen. You realise you are not actually invincible. Every doctors visit, every scan, every lump, every ache…. causes incredible anxiety.

I actually experienced this for the first time a few years ago – in a bit of a different way. My daughter was sick. She was only six then, but she was the bravest little girl I know. She was poked endlessly, scanned multiple times, went through a tough surgery and took medications for six months… all with a smile on her face. She is, as I always call her, a warrior princess- though she is not very fond of the princess part these days. A few months after her surgery, I had some pain in my leg and I had to go for an X-ray. I remember the moment I entered the X-ray room, I couldn’t stop crying. I had a flashback of my little girl during her CT scan and how dreadfully worried I was about her back then, and I broke down completely. It brought back memories of one of the worst times of my life.


I’m coming close to my yearly scans, and to say I’m anxious is an understatement. What am i worried about? All of it – the procedure itself, the results, the waiting, the flashback of all I went through. The first time a lump is referred to as cancer, it changes you forever. From that moment on, hearing the words “scan” or “lump” is a whole different experience. Scanxiety is real, scanxiety is valid & scanxiety is tough!

I will be sharing tips that helped me get through my own scanxiety in another post soon!

7 responses to “The Silent Scanxiety”

  1. I can imagine the fear and the anxiousness, but faith I hope is what keeps us strong and full of hope.
    All the best on your tests and scans for the coming period habibti, keep faith and a big smile on your beautiful face 🤍


  2. I can imagine the fear and the anxiousness, but faith I hope is what keeps us strong and full of hope.
    All the best on your tests and scans for the coming period habibti, keep faith and a big smile on your beautiful face 🤍

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I feel traumatised just reading this! How strong & brave you both are! I had a CT scan some years back and an MRI a year later for something else, I didn’t have scanxiety, because ignorance is bliss and you don’t fear the worse when it’s your first time. Who knows how I will be feeling, now I know that I realise none of us are ‘invincible’ and simply gifted with time. May you and yours be blessed with continued good health xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Bani for always taking the time to read my posts! And totally agree with you, ignorance is bliss and it’s nice that way sometimes! I hope ur results now and in the future will always keep a sweet smile on your face!


  4. So touching Sandy… You and Adriana are very strong… God bless you both hbb… Hopefully the upcoming days will be full of health and happiness enshallah 🙏

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: