Can you help with swollen nodes?

I have a palpable swollen node in my “other” armpit and one in my supraclavicular region. The repeat ultrasound showed no increase in size (ie. same) after a 4 week wait and the radiologist said they both appear to be benign. Although they are not hard, they are also NOT tender nor did they correspond to any infections, yet neither my radiologist or Onc seem to think they need to be biopsied.

I had a recurrence (2 skin-involved nodules) in the last year that the ultrasound said were benign, but biopsy proved malignant. Has any one had any experience of swollen nodes proving malignant with benign characteristics?

Cheers, Nikki

Hi Nikki

I think you should ask for a biospy.

best wishes


Hi Nikki

I have just had two lumps removed from under my arm on Monday. The team thought about biopsy, but then worked on the principal better out and biopsied so at least it’s a done deal as a needle biopsy could ‘miss’, and benign or not it was probably safer to get rid. I get my results on Monday.

I would say have them out, especially based on the previous reoccurance.

Very best of luck


Hi Nikki

I found a swelling under my arm on affected side - had already had chemo, mast with partial node clearance and rads. Found this6 months after treatment finished. Ultrasound showed 2 enlarged nodes - they did fna with me and found cancer in them both - have since had total aux clearance. In my experience they cannot just tell from scan - you need to get fna or biopsy. I would insist on it.

Good Luck

I agree with all the above comments, I have had a local recurrence in axilla in 2005, at the moment I have another lump in axilla which is also cancerous, after being told for 2 years it is scar tissue wish I had insisted on further investigation. At the moment I am awaiting to see if I can have surgery to remove it. Even if there are going to be more regional recurrences I would rather have them removed, than know and feel they are there. I would ask for biopsies or removal.

all the best Ann

Thanks girls…

Jantharra, Sparkler and Ann I was wondering whether your radiologists say that the node(s) looked benign, but say they would biopsy them just in case? Mine were considered birads 3.



All mine said was they looked suspicious, were obviously enlarged so they HAD to do FNA to get some cells. (By the way, my first consultant basically laughed at me and told me there was nothing there and was not even going to scan me, but I insisted…would have been a different story if I hadnt).

I just believe we cannot take any chances and they cannot just tell from a scan. Push for more - push push push


Hi Nikki

Mine did ultrasound and said wanted to talk to team, she said there were two lumps visible and she couldn’t say what they were, she also said could do needle or could remove but that would be decided by my surgeon, onc and nursing team together.

To be fair I have yet to get my results, so the other girls who have posted may have better experiences, also I am extremely priviledged to have private health care, so maybe they are quicker to do the expensive stuff, I dont know really.

However, my heart and head would always say… push for what YOU feel is right, it’s YOUR body and YOUR life. Don’t give a damn about thier feelings in this hun and don’t take any chances as Sparkler says.

Let us know ok


Hi Nikki

Just to let know the nodes removed have biopsied as cancer, so please go check yours!!!


Hi Jantharra/ Nikki

I am so-ooo sorry your nodes proved to be cancerous… Is this a recurrence for you?

I am so lacking confidence with regard mine, cos on one hand taking my history I cannot believe they didn’t opt for biopsy and on the other hand I think they must be really sure that they are benign…

I have had so many wierd things wrong with me this year, I keep having clear scans which should be great, but somehow I am not trusting them cos of past experience. My onc is due to call next week with results of MRI he ordered, so I’ll pluck up the courage and bring up my concerns then.

Nikki xx

Yes re-occurance. The orginal tumour was deep and right against the chest wall so my surgoen is hoping these nodes which are not the ones up in the armpit but further down (even tho the pain was armpit) are a hangover from that. CT on Friday, hoping against hope that it’s not spread, will get full answers on Wednesday next week, when see Onc for next steps.

You know your body best Nikki, don’t leave anything to chance ok. If they are totally confident they are benign then ok, but if they have a sliver of doubt, take em out.

Wishing you luck next week.


Dear Nikki/Jantharra

I do pray that your CT scans are clear…The wait is truly horrendous and I so feel for you.

I was pretty cool with my primary DX, (stage 1 grade 1), but the recurrence really shocked me…(now 3b). I still feel pragmatic - I have’nt been hardly at all emotional; I’m quite prepared for whatever will be…and am not scared of treatments or death, yet psychologically I cannot help thinking it’s spread! This is a desease of the mind as well as the body…

Will be thinking ofyou and waiting to hear your outcome…

Sending you love n luck…

Nikki xx

Dear Jantharra

Just wanted to say I’m thinking of you and so sorry you are having to go through this. Waiting to find out results is such an awful time and I hope your scans come back clear.

Nikki just wanted to say am thinking of you too.

Although I don’t have a reoccurence, it’s something I can’t help but think about most days due to the type of my breast cancer and size of the lump. Any little niggle gets my mind whirring.

Love to you all
Ruby xx

Hi Nikki, you are absolutely right it is about the mind and the body. As am only 10 months post end of treatment I must admit this time I am feeling somewhat pessimistic right now, but then seem to remember being doom and gloom for the first week of so post dx the first time so maybe I am not any different.

I have to admit I have asked to see the counsellor this time, I have some stuff in my head which I think it would be benificial to discuss (the why me, why again, why da**n it, why, it’s all over stuff) I will bounce back I am sure, and I will take what happens and fight of course I will, it’s good to talk though eh.

Let us know how you get on ok Nikki

Best wishes


Hi Ruby,

many thanks for writing and I hope you NEVER have a reoccurance!!!

The ‘fear’ is so hard to deal with, the constant oh god is this ‘it’ I would imagine it gets somewhat less of an instant reaction to the slightest twinge, pain or headache, and I hope I get the chance to find that out!! I will let you all know in 5 years and then 10 years time ok guys :slight_smile:

Best wishes