Breast pain on and off 5 years

Hi I was diagnosed with BC in left breast in 2017, had Lumpectomy plus radiotherapy and then Tamoxifen for 5 years. Been doing well except for a nipping feeling in left breast which was told it was nerve endings. Recently feeling got worse and my GP referred me to breast clinic where I got mammogram and ultrasound and was told I had scar tissue. The only thing that bothers me is if I turn a certain way the pain shoots through my breast and literally takes my breath away. The rest of the time I have good days and bad days when the scar tissue pulls a bit but painkillers help. Does anyone have the same problem

Hi Lizzy1

Thank you for posting.

After surgery for breast cancer and in the months and often years that follow it’s common to feel some pain and discomfort. You may experience different sensations such as a burning feeling and also sharp shooting pains. Ongoing (chronic) or persistent pain may be caused by damage to the nerves. A combination of surgery and radiotherapy can leave you with scar tissue that can sometimes pull on the muscle behind your breast which causes this pain you are feeling on certain movements.

It’s good that you have been reviewed and reassured by your GP and local breast clinic. Sometimes this pain can persist and we know this can affect quality of life. Wearing a well fitted non-wired supportive bra can help and using topical painkillers such as ibuprofen gel if you are able.

Talking to someone who has had a similar experience can often be helpful. Our Someone Like Me service can match you with a trained volunteer who’s had a similar experience to you. You can be in touch with your volunteer by phone or email and they can share their personal experiences to answer your questions, offer support or simply listen to how you are feeling.

You can ring the Someone Like Me team on 0114 263 6490 or email them at, so they can then match you to your volunteer.

Do call our helpline if you would like to talk this through or have any further questions. The helpline team have time to listen to your concerns, talk things through and signpost you to more support and information. Your call will be confidential, and the number is free from UK landlines and all mobile networks. The number is 0808 800 6000, (Relay UK -prefix 18001).

If you would prefer one of our nurses to call you. To do this, please complete this form ticking the box agreeing to a call back.

Our usual opening hours are Monday to Friday 9am - 4pm and 9am -1pm on Saturday.

We are closed:

Monday 25 December

Tuesday 26 December

Monday 1 January

Out of hours you can leave a message and we will call you back when we next open.

Best wishes


Breast Care Nurse

Please read the Ask Our Nurses disclaimer Full details on how we collect and use your data can be found in our Privacy Policy

You could possibly suggest SLM, for someone to talk to with a similar experience?