Lumps in neck

Hi. I was diagnosed with breast cancer 6 years ago, just marked my 5 years clear. I found 2 lumps in my neck 2 weeks ago, one being near the clavicle. Been to GP who thinks they are swollen lymph nodes due to an infection and they do feel like one I had a few  years ago which was ok - put down to an infection. I didn’t think I had an infection this time because I felt ok in general, maybe a little sore throat which doctor said was red when I went. I am so anxious at the moment that my cancer has come back. GP has referred me to breast clinic and have an appointment soon. Since visiting to the GP I haven’t been well - sore throat, glands up, tired, achy. 
Logical me says the lymph nodes are doing their job and fighting the virus but the irrational me says it cancer. 
I do have a question - as I had 7 nodes removed does it mean the nodes that are left have to work harder? Thanks everyone 

Hi @mdw300  - I’m sorry to read about your lymph nodes, and completely understand your worries. I’m a bit behind you and have had worries on 2 of my yearly mammograms. Good that you have been so vigilant and have spoken to your GP, that your GP thinks they are a just a sign of infection but has referred you to make doubly sure. The waiting for results is horrible isn’t it, while your mind goes into overdrive. Do chat on here anytime you need to offload, or need some support.

Re your question about the nodes working harder - you might want to call the lovely nurses on here as it’s a medical question, but also they are very kind and might help reassure you.

I really hope you get an appointment soon and the reassurance you are looking for - do come back and let us know, if you feel like it of course. Sending hugs, Evie xx


I’m sorry to read about your experience. Last November I noticed a swollen gland in my neck and I also had a problem with my eyelid on the same side - both on the side where I had had full axillary clearance in 2018. I had a lovely chat with a nurse here and she advised me to ring my breastcare nurse. I did and the following day, I was sitting in my oncologist’s office! All I wanted to know was the same as you - would axillary clearance mean other lymph systems would have to work harder. Would it explain this constantly swollen gland (of course it went down in the next few days!)

To cut a long story short, I underwent a CT scan and an MRI. My swollen gland was nothing to worry about. However, my oncologist had referred me to Ophthalmology and a biopsy unfortunately revealed that I had secondary breast cancer in my medial canthus (the dip at the top of your nose/eyelid). I’m now settling into treatment.

I guess my message is that common sense would say you are right and you have no reason to fear a return of your cancer,  especially as you know you’ve had a virus. But, if you have had breast cancer, don’t leave anything to chance. If you are offered an appointment, go and ask the experts about those lymph nodes and get checked out. Otherwise you will constantly worry and that’s no way to live. The nurse here could easily have answered my question but the need to be thorough led her to encourage me to contact my hospital. I am so glad she did. Don’t be fearful. Just be thorough. I wish you all the best and hope your swollen glands settle down soon.

Jan x