help! what does your armpit scar feel like?

hello lovely ladies, just needing some advice and guidance!

i had my lumpectomy (2.6cm IDC) and lymphnode sampling (8 nodes removed, disease free) last april 09.
i then had bi lateral mastectomies in november 09 (with no further surgery to armpit area).

i can now feel a thick tissue in my armpit under the scar area, and about three enlarged moveable lymphnodes. i am wondering (hoping!) it is scar tissue, and that the lymphnodes are just reacting to the surgical effects of the mastectomies. does this sound plausible? does anyone else have hard tissue in their armpit a year on from lymphnode sampling?!!!
i am seeing my surgeon in two weeks so will obviously mention it to him, but in the meantime can anyone offer any advice? what does your armpit feel like?..

thanks in advance, B

Hi i had full clearance when i had my first mastectomy about 18 months ago and then also had rads to that area… my armpit does feel very hard but obviously no nodes left to feel… I think it is good that you have an appointment coming up and you should definatly mention it then… Are you still in contact with your bcn? I don’t know if you should give her a ring in the meanwhile as a fortnight can feel like an eternity whilst you are worrying about something… or try giving the helpline on here a ring… Have you had a cold or anything like that recently as the nodes can swell if you have been poorly…

Hope you get some good news and it is nothing serious…

Theresa x

I agree with teresa. My lymph nodes were enlarged at diagnosis but i was full of a minging cold and that was the reason they were up.

Call your BCN honey. They maybe able to see you sooner.


Hi Redcell

Don’t know it it’s any help but I have had several regional recurrances under my armpit and they have all started off feeling like tiny round peas which got bigger and remained circular.

I would get in touch with bc nurse to see if you can get seen sooner but they sound nothing like mine felt. Hope it’s nothing but sooner checked sooner peace of mind.

Love Anne xx

I had full clearance in Nov 2006 and my scar it hard. It sometimes feels really achy as well.

thanks ladies for your responses. i have contacted BCN and will be seen early next week. can honestly say i’m cacking my pants it’s something sinister, and cant stop prodding! i’d been okay and getting on with things as ‘normal’ and this has just thrown me. haven’t had a cold and have been feeling really well… two inches of thick curly hair and have been looking forward to this summer with my son (he’s 18 months nearly), as last summer i was on chemo.
thanks again ladies, i’ll keep you posted. xxxx

Glad to hear that they have managed to fit you in sooner… i really hope they are able to put your mind at rest… {{{hugs}}}

Theresa x

I loathe having my yearly checkup because when they press my armpit it aches for days afterwards.

Hi Redcell,
I had chemo (Aug 07) then lumpectomy and full node clearance in March/April 2oo8,
I still have a hardness to the area, have had loads of checks and all fine, could be radiotherapy caused it, or just scar tissue.
Dont know if you had rads, but thought Id let you know as I had mine a year before you and stii hard but is def ok.
Take care
Dawn X

thanks again ladies… must … stop… prodding… think … i am… making … it … worse… !!!

My WLE and ANC was 3 years ago but I still have intermittent hardness and discomfort under my arm. Every time I carry something too heavy - every supermarket shop or when travelling with heavy bags and no-one to help me - one node under my arm swells and is painful for a couple of days. The breast surgeon and radiologist look at it every time I have a checkup but they say it’s nothing to worry about.
Let’s hope yours is nothing to worry about either. Good luck.
Anthi x


hello ladies, an update…

saw my surgeon today who had a good feel of my armpit and he said he wasn’t suspicious of anything sinister. he said he could feel scar tissue along the underneath of the incision site and a few lymph nodes that were ‘compensating’ for the removal of others.

obviously i know fingers are NOT diagnostic, so i will keep a very close eye (as i always do!!!) on the whole area, but i am initially very reassured. i do trust my surgeon.

we also felt other lymph nodes in the other armpit (i had bi lateral masts) that felt similar to the ones i felt on my disease side.

so all in all a good outcome today. thankyou ladies for your support and advice. xxxx

Very glad to hear you have had your mind put at ease. There is nothing worse than being concerned about all the niggly things. After rads I had stabbing pains in my 2 bottom ribs which lasted for 2 years, then it suddenly just went last summer. I suddenly had the stabbing on Sunday out of the blue and was thinking not again. Thankfully, it seems to have just been that once.