Just to add another note of reassurance. I had cording from my armpit to my elbow after my mastectomy and node clearance, 5+ years ago. The physiotherapist at the local hospital (who specialised in women's health) showed us some good massage techniques, concentrating on the armpit area. I took my husband and my mum to the consultations so they could see how to do it as it's virtually impossible to do effectively on oneself. We were diligent about doing it every day for a few weeks and the problem receded and has never recurred.
Could your BCN add some weight to your push for a rapid referral to physio at the hospital? (Mine did).
I felt very despondent and thought I'd never get back to full range of movement after my op (and then a frozen shoulder problem the following year) but it did happen. I'm never going to be the opening bowler in a Test Match but I can do most things.
All the best, you have my sympathy.
I too experienced cording and asked for a Physical Therapy referral. PT helped tremendously by deeply massaging the area and giving me exercises to do at home that involved stretching and rolling a tennis ball under the arm. I also had slight lymph fluid buildup under arm and on back (due to removal of 4 centinel lymph nodes), and PT helped show me how to re-route the draining lymph fluid to other lymphatic drainage areas. The cording came be quite symptomatic so ask your PS for referrals to PT to get assistance. They can help you get relief.
Hope this helps,
O maggie59 no good about the infection. Thats just a bit unfair!
My surgeon told me if I dont push it hard with the stretches I will lose my arms range of movement. Feels like a vice across the scar and that whole underarm chest to wrist is like new fence wire. I swear it twangs when you move.
Im a bit astounded as the stretching is so important they dont send us to physio instead of a quick demo and a brochure. Timing on getting stuck in is really important as the scar tissue builds.
Much love and long stretchy hugs. Xxx
Hi, just wanted to re-assure you, I had dreadful cording down my affected arm to my wrist. This came from the scar tissue from node clearance. I had quite a bit of physio on it. The physio put pressure on the cords and the thinner ones you could actually hear them crack. The cracking didn't hurt,in fact it was relief. The more stubborn ones took quite a while i'm afraid. I sat everynight rubbing bio oil into my scar,which was quite uncomfortable. I would strongly suggest that you do the stretching exercises though, even if it hurts, because it really helped me. I am nearly 2 years now and I have full movement in my arm. I can still feel a couple of small lumps underneath the scar,which are small cysts,the reminants of the swelling. (They don't hurt! I just know they are there) they have been looked at under ultrasound and show as being full of fluid! I am able to to everything that I could do before,so it will eventually get better,it's just slow. Hope this helps.