Armpit area - feeling odd

Hi ladies

I’m a little bothered by how the armpit/breast which has been operated on is feeling. Although the whole area is number, it feels like there is something there. I’ve felt around but can’t feel anything specific and was wondering if anybody else has these feelings and if maybe it’s something to do with lymphodema. If I feel in my armpit, it feels completely different to the other one which was not operated on - I think this may just be scarring and the fact that everything in there has been taken out.

If anybody has anything similar or any advice, I’d be really grateful. I get really nervous about anything that doesn’t feel right.

thanks Ruby xx

Hi Ruby
Your last comment ’ i get very nervous about anything that doesnt feel right’ is how most of us feel i think once Dx with breast cancer.
Personally i dont think any area thats been operated on feels completely like it did before.
for a long time now as i am 3 and half years since operation i have asked and asked ‘what should my scar and under my arm feel like?’ No one can answer that as i suppose we are all different. I had a mastectomy and SNB, no lymphodeoma so can’t help with what that would be like but others will be able too.

The best thing i have found to do is see your Bc nurse or oncologist, I dont find my GP very good. One i saw a few weeks ago said ‘its very hard to know what to feel for with scar tissue’ great!! Fortunately i have an oncologist appt soon.
Do see someone though if your concerned. I know only too well i have driven myself demented with worry and felt quite ill and its not worth it.
Good luck and let us know how you get on.

Hi Ruby

Good advice from liverbird, I reckon. Take it up with someone who should know.

You might ‘just’(!) have some lymphoedema in that area, with the remaining lymph nodes congested. This could be reason for the ‘you can feel something but you can’t’. But best to get it checked out and if it’s lymphoedema, you should be given some help with that, too.



Hi Ruby,

I would also recommend speaking to your Breast Care Nurse. One thought though - do you think it may be cording? I had this after my sentinal node biopsy last year and now have it again following mastectomy in January.

Hope you find an answer soon! Good luck,

HI there Liverbird,Bahons and Geewhiz

Thanks so much for your replies. I did speak to the oncologist’s assistant today about it all and she said that it could be a collection of fluid as the fluid can pool. I do have an appointment with the oncologist in April and the assistant told me that if I was worried I could see him sooner.

I had my operation quite a while ago now - November 2007 so it’s 1 1/4 years ago now. I do have cording so maybe that is adding to the feeling. I do try and stretch and exercise the area but doesn’t seem to make much difference.

Like you say Liverbird, nothing feels the same once it has been operated on - the whole area is completely numb so it’s weird to have this feeling of something being there but actually not!

Oh how I hate this horrible feeling you get whenever something doesn’t seem right!

Thanks again xx

Hi Ruby

I have a simlar thing to you I think. It feels as though I’m wearing tight clothes that are bunched up under my arm, even when I haven’t got anything on! I’ve been trying to keep up the exercises even though I’m 3 yrs past mast and almost 2 yrs past recon - since the recon I’ve alway had a bit of stiffness in the area but now it seems to be worse together with that weird feeling. I also get terrible cramps across my chest at times.

I have a hosp appt next week, I can’t feel any lumps so fingers x’ed is nothing horrid - I think maybe it’s scar tissue or lymphoedema in the armpit/trunk - hopefully it can be sorted.

Hi Serenity
I really think that maybe we have the same thing - thank you for telling me about how your armpit feels to you and you have described exactly that it feels like to me. I also have a sort of cramp feeling across my chest on occasions. Haven’t had reconstruction thought yet. Hope the hospital appointment is all ok.
Best wishes

Ruby x

Hi Ruby

Just thought I would let you know what happened at the hosp. Very thoroughly prodded, squashed and ultrasounded - they are happy there is nothing nasty lurking nor any lymphoedema. Just scar tissue tightening - make sure I keep doing the exercises. They say it can take a very long time for the area to recover from surgery and as I’ve had two lots of major surgery to the area it can take even longer! Just have to put up with it I suppose, now I know it’s nothing to worry about. Hope yours is feeling better.