Is this cording?

Hi, I’m wondering if anyone can help me with this? I finished active treatment over 5 years ago, and have not long finished taking tamoxifen, maybe about 6 months ago, after 5 years. Generally I’m fine, but lately I’ve noticed a tightness in my arm on my operation side. I had a WLE and full axillary clearance. Don’t think it’s lymphodoema, as my arm isn’t swollen, and doesn’t seem to fit any of the other symptoms of that, but I do remember reading about “cording” when I was having my treatment and I wondered if it might be that? It comes and goes, but when I feel it, my arm feels a bit stiff, and I can’t reach as far as I normally can - also feels tight inside, like a string’s being pulled taut. Can’t see anything. Just wondered if I should speak to my breast care nurse about this, or if there are any exercises I should be doing to loosen it off. Also, is there anything I shouldn’t be doing?

If it cording then you should be able to feel the cords. Try straightening your arm as far as you can and then feel along the length of your arm to see if you can feel what feels like guitar strings along the length of your arm.
Try doing the “walking up the wall” exercises that we were all given post op - see if this helps.

hey there, i had cording but couldn’t always feel the cords exactly - but it had all the other symptoms, the exercises supertrooper mentions will get rid of it if you do them regularly…best of luck

Sounds like cording. I developed it a few weeks post op. I spoke to my BCN and she put me intouch with a breast physio at the hospital. she gave me 3 excercises to do 2-3 times a day. They were different to the ones we were given post op and they REALLY helped. She could actually feel the cording as I stretched my arm, but when I went back after 2 weeks all that pain and tightness had gone!! Ive been fine ever since.
Good luck
Mandy x

Yep, sounds like cording. I was told by a nurse friend who also had BC that we should never stop the excercises if we dont want the cording to come back… maybe if I do a few more (and on both sides) I will get rid of my Bingo Wings too…

Hello to you all, I had cording after my Axillary Node Clearance and the cords were so tight that they actually snapped and I heard a loud crack when I did the exercises. The best exercise for me was to lie flat on the bed and stretch your arm right back using the other hand to guide the affected arm as far as possible until it hurts so much you cannot stand the pain any longer. Continue with this for about 20 times until the arm gets gradually easier.
I can understand why the BCN said continue with the exercises as my arm sometimes gets very stiff and feels very tight in the arm pit region. So we need to do our exercises and sing " Hands up Baby Hands up …" Sorry if you are not from my era, but that song always helped me do the exercises when I was singing in the shower !!
Love Tracy xxx

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone who replied - I’ve been on holiday (extended by Hurricane Sandy) or would have posted sooner! I’ll start the exercises again and see if they help…thanks again for all the replies.