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Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Jax,

That is good news! 🤗 What a relief for you! Thanks for sharing your results with us. I hope the treatment you've had will make you a bit more comfortable.

Gx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi all re-update on my biopsy, I have been told it is a Seroma ,I had a pocket of fluid with a mass of tissue the mass 24mmx 29mm was scar tissue nothing sinister ,if I had some advice after surgery about this complication I may not have been worried. The fluid has been taken away , they can’t say it won’t come back ,massage and compression bra may help , they are going to keep an eye on me as I may develop lymphedema in future ,thank you everyone for your wise words and concern. Xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Thanks for your advice, Snottydotty. I've checked the scar tissue and it does come back up when I press it, so that's good. Still, it's all the other lumps and bumps, and the constantly shifting aches that are driving me crazy. I know you're right: I need to contact my BCN, if only to calm myself down. It's interesting you were offered an ultrasound. That's so much more preferable than a mammogram - I hate those, they're just so painful. I'll see if I can have that instead if it's needed.

Gxx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

It was explained to me that the way to tell if it is scar tissue is to press it. If it levels out it is. If it remains rigid it need to be investigated. I recently had to go back to my breast care unit for a small bit of tissue I found that didn't level out. My surgeon said immediately that it was scar tissue. He did explain why some doesn't level out but that went over my head! He arranged an ultrasound to put my mind at rest and of course he was right. I agree we are left high and dry once treatment stops so all the more reason why you need to arrange an appointment. I arranged mine by calling the breast care unit direct. 2

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Jax,

Like you I'm TN and like you I find it hard to push the constant worries about recurrence away. I really hope that the tests you had come up with nothing! Back in March I had quite severe breast pain and was lucky to be offered a mammogram by my surgeon just before lockdown. It turned out that the various lumps I could feel were just scar tissue, but that's the problem really - how do you tell the difference between that sort of pain/lump and something more serious? Right now I've got pain around my scars again and don't know whether to contact my BCN. My BCN did say I should contact her if I have any concerns, but I feel that I don't want to bother her with every new pain. Being TN and unable to take any longterm medication definitely has some advantages, but it sometimes also makes dealing with these worries hard, as I feel I've got nothing to help me fight recurrence.

Being able to post here is helpful, but like so many others on this forum I wish there was more on offer in terms of longterm aftercare. The first few weeks following treatment were ok, as I was exploring various free things on offer such as acupuncture and yoga, plus I felt so relieved to have got through everything and having been given assurances about my good prognosis. But now, 16 months on, that support is no longer there, and that's when I could really do with it.

Gx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I have been experiencing pain under my arm and across my breast for a few months , I was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer 2015 I had chemo , radiotherapy and lumpectomy and a couple of lymph nodes removed I made good recovery but last May I had some more surgery as I had problems with sinking on one side of my breast and scar tissue, I had a lot of tissue removed but it’s been a problem really since.I found in last 2 months real pain in my underarm and across my breast , I could feel a lump so I went yesterday to breast clinic and I’ve ended up having scan and needle biopsy and some fluid removed I get my results next week , I’m praying it’s not a second cancer, but you have to trust your instincts, you know your body and if things aren’t right , it’s so hard trying to live with with this, its  always in the background you try to get on with your life but it never goes away.I also got a chemical menopause thanks to the chemo and  I think there should be more sites like this where you can talk to others who feel the same and can empathise, I dont tell my family or friends how I feel because I don’t want them to worry them. I wish there was more about the aftermath of Breast cancer and complications and for people who can’t have HRT as I can’t because of the cancer being TN . 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Gaby.

Am so with u about pain.  Any ache or pain and I'm terrified.

Bit pretty much sure its nothing or in my head.  I still have tenderness numbness from my op. Finished treatment in January this year.  Keep positive and any worries see ure doctor.  Due to what uve had they are pretty much easy to contact or see, even with what's going on.

Stay safe. Stay sanitised. Stay positive 

Lin x

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi,

It sounds like lymphedema. Have you tried a compression bra? This one is good quality and comfortable and works great: https://www.lymphedemaproducts.com/products/medical-breast-shapewear.html.

I'm two years post Stage 2A IDC Grade 3 with two lumpectomies(the second to get clearer margins), and sentinel node biopsy. I choose not to do chemo, since I have my own medical office and prefer to continue living with my nerves intact(somewhat) and to keep the chemo that stays toxic more than 25 years out of the Columbia River, which flows right by my town. It's easier if you're 65 to make those kinds of decisions....Anyway, hope the compression bra helps--I still wear mine for sometimes a week at a time, off and on, when the pain starts. A patient of mine, a year and a half post stage 1 IDC with lumpectomy and radiation,  still wears this bra most nights when she feels it coming on--an uncomfortable, heavy, tender feeling, that can make you feel somewhat physically ill. Lymphedema of the breast is quite common, but for some reason, it is rarely mentioned as a potential problem, by surgeons or oncologists. Even if you can't see the swelling, your body feels it.

Best to you!

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Ladies

 

I had my surgery in September 2018 and still have discomfort. I constantly feel like I have a drawing pin stuck in my boob where the cancer was. Constant little pains and sore breastbone and ribs, back too. If I don't use my affected side arm it starts to feel like cording is coming back. I have to sleep on my tummy so use a pillow to soften the blow, so to speak! Hugging is uncomfortable and mammograms are actually painful. Not sure why it's all so sensitive, it drives me crackers. I had an (abdominal) hysterectomy 10 years ago and was moving furniture after six weeks, recovering from that was a walk in the park compared to this and all the issues from treatment I've been left with. 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi lovely ladies, 

I finished treatment 15 months ago (chemo, lumpectomy & SNB, 20 rounds  of radiotherapy) and as I am Triple Negative, am not on any medication. It's been a huge comfort and relief to read all your posts. I too have various aches and pains in my left breast, which seems to change both in intensity and location all the time and right now are extending from my breast down my left arm and hand. It's the unpredictability of when, where and why that I find difficult to cope with. I seem to go for weeks with one sort of ache, then it changes and pops up somewhere else - which inevitably gets me worried. Once I've managed to calm down a bit, my problems rather weirdly often subside. Right now I'm trying to calm down after panicking about the latest pain (feels like muscle ache and slight stinging pain at the top of my breast, so not even near my scars) and reading about all your experiences really helps me with that. As always, I'm very grateful for this forum. 

Gaby 🥰

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi I’ve had chronic pain since lumpectomy 18mths ago as well. I also have been fobbed off by surgeon, oncology, & physio.
my pain is a burning sensation. I have just had nerve conducting testing but it came back fine. However he said that only picks up large nerves, I could still have a hundred small nerves playing havoc. It’s just the not knowing.

nickydee_0-1600634122610.png

 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Lin

 

Thank you for your post.  I too finished my radiotherapy Jan 2020,  sometimes my breast is tender, sore.  Other times it is fine.  I also aching in joints and tire very quickly.  Reassuring to read the posts as I am 64 and do not want to go visit the hospital due to covid.  

Take care, keep safe, Angela xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I am grateful to God that I have never encountered this, but I read the reviews of people and it seems to me that this is completely normal. In any case, I think that such things are best discussed with doctor becaise there are a lot of unskilled people on the forum and their advice can only do much harm. I just want to share my experience. I use Kratom capsules from Kratom rank vendors  from pain all the time. This method helps me a lot. Sometimes I also use kratom powder and add it to tea. It relaxes nerve cells and you do not feel pain. Kratom is just an amazing medicine!

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

No worries

 I'm in constant pain and had to endure a mammogram. It wasnt anywhere as bad as I thought.  I think for me it's a constant reminder I'm still alive and have survived.  I am sure it will only get better. 

Lin

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I have been googling breast pain 18 months on from treatment and ended up here! I know you posted this a year ago, but reading it has helped me as I’m gripped by the fear. The aches pains and soreness have been freaking me out!!! No one at the hospital tells you about this, and they have fobbed me off, so I’ve been suffering and worrying alone. Just wanted to share what a help this post has been!

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi T.

Sorry to hear of your probs. 

I finished my last radiotherapy beginning of Jan. I have a very sensitive breast and still so much numbness for the surgery. Most of my upper arm and armpit so numb.  I'm trying to find wireless bras to help with the discomfort. Terrible aches in all joints. I've aged 50 years since surgery lol  but am out walking every day and painkillers normally do the trick.

Know what you mean about lockdown again, I got my 6 months practice in last summer. 

Take care  lin x

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Susan

Do you have a link for the compression band?  I have been given some padding with cubes of foam in it to put in my bra, it is supposed to have a massage effect and help fluid between the breast tissues drain away.  I have been using it for a week now and the pain is less and suppleness as improved. I thought the compression band would be good to sleep in for support - not that i have a large bust - and maybe stop fluid build up overnight.

 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Have you tried mometasone for the itchy rash? Using it during radiation treatment, and after, when my skin flares up, has worked great for me.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

A compression breast binder might help. The pain is likely secondary to lymphedema  and radiation damage(reconfiguring the fat beneath skin, reducing suppleness. I'm 20 months out from lumpectomies and radiation, and a bit of lymhedema, hardly perceptible by observation, makes my whole side hurt, from chest to hand--even to the other breast. The pain subsides immediately when chest is compressed. I put it on after I get home from the office and sometimes sleep in it.

Expand A Band breast binder is the brand in the US.

Also, there are some good DIY lymphedema massage sites out there on the internet.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

You should not have to wait so long for results.  My doc has patients wait in the office for no longer than half an hour to get results right then.  Blessings

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

My oncologist is also located in a hospital filled with corona patients.  Their lab has one technician currently being treated for the virus.  What a scary situation with those of us with any health problems.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Two years after lumpectomy my breast is very tender, like a sore muscle.  Because of the virus situation I am scared to ignore this as well as scared to see my doctor.  Suggestions, please.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Thanks so much for your messages!!!

i have a question - has anyone else had tailbone pain/discomfort whilst on tamoxifen? No matter how many reassurances I get (scan included) I am so worried as it is persisting.... xxx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Truccles

I had my surgery in Sept '19 followed by radiotherapy which finished in Dec.  My breast still feels very sore and my nipple has changed shape on the surgery side.  I mentioned this to my consultant who is sending me for a scan.  She said it is probably still settling down after all the treatment.  I have been really worried but after coming on here and reading some of the post it is reassuring to me to know that a lot of women have had some sort of breast pain and swelling long after their treatment finished and it seems to be quite normal.

I am not on Tamoxifen but still have Herceptin and Pertuzumab every 3 weeks, these are due to finish in June.

I am still going to go to the scan appointment even though i am anxious about visiting the hospital due to the current virus because it is the same building that the Covid patients are in. 

I feel just like you with things at the moment being like Deja vu.  Was just getting back to 'normal' then back at home again.

 

Take care 

Debi

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

It is one worry after another and it's hard to know what not to worry about. You should call your bcn if you're worried about the puckering so you can have your mind put at rest. My bcn told me never to put my health at risk out of politeness 😊

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Thanks to all of you for posting on this subject - I stumbled across these posts just when I needed them!

I had lumpectomy and node clearance in December 2018, 6 rounds of chemo and then rads - finished active treatment in July 2019 and am now on daily Tamoxifen. I returned to full time teaching in September 2019 and have been exercising and running loads and generally think I'm doing quite well - I am 48.

BUT - OMG, these aches and pains!!!!!!!!  Firstly, they like to mix it up don't they? They don't stay in the same place! Feet, hips, shoulder, tailbone (so bad I needed a bone scan, which came back clear) and then of course, the breast!

My affected breast has done ok shape wise - my lump was 3cm and my scar has healed really well - some hardness where scar tissue is which was actually eased by a scar tissue massage therapist (will resume appointments with her once lockdown eases).  I've had regular breast exams and a clear mammogram.  When I run my breast does change shape (!) but settles after an hour or so.

But yesterday, I was looking at my self in the mirror and I am sure my scar area has changed shape again- more of an indent, a bit puckered. And so, I freaked out again!  I just cannot cope with the constant worry - it is literally one ache eases, and a new one begins!!!

I do call the BCN whenever I feel worried - not too often - and they are very supportive. But only spoke to her a few days ago about my tailbone - if I call her now about my breast, I'm sure she'll think I'm a hypochondriac!!!!!

I hope everyone is coping with lockdown - it has certainly given me far too much time to worry - and, like I say, I had gone back to work full time and was LOVING it - this seems like deja vu, stuck back at home agin!  Bring on real life again!!!

Much love, T x

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

yes its weird, never 100% pain free but some days seem better than others.  mornings are best and by end of day I am in so much pain I just go to bed to not have to deal with it!!!

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Yes definitely mention it.  Even if by April you think things are getting better. I have found that just when I think it's got better, I do something that makes it worse again. Using weights at the gym, for example, definitely made my shoulder worse.  And I'd only gone there thinking it would make it stronger!!  xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Thank you for the response, it helps me put my mind at ease.  I had also tossed around the nerve damage possibility as my lump was way down in the breast by the chest cavity.  I see my BC in April and will talk to her again about it!

 

 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I think it is nerve damage that can be caused by the op and / or radiotherapy.  My neck and shoulder pain is still there and I didn't have any lymph nodes removed so it can't be that for me.  Oncologist said nerve damage is common.  Plus years ago I had a shoulder problem and I think the position they put me in during the op may have brought that back again as I bet they position your arm over your head.  Every pain is a worry though. Glad you have had tests to put your mind at rest but hope you find a away of managing the pain now. At my first mammo post treatment I mentioned the discomfort to the BCN at my review and she said she could get me physiotherapy if it didn't go away.  But I never took her up on that as I work full time and was reluctant to have more time off.  But if it's an option for you, please speak to your BCN.  Good luck! xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

The bras are a real issue. I am also more than amply endowed and have not been able to find anything that does the trick. I’ve gone back to a Wacoal wired sports bra. The wires are on the outside of the bra as a separate frame. Not quite as uncomfortable as others. When I don’t have to go out in public, I wear Leading Lady front hook bras, but the support is laughable. I have also tried ordering from Decent Exposures. They aren’t pretty but they are comfortable and they will customize for you. They don’t have separate cups though - there is a strip of fabric in the middle to “separate” but I cut it off and use that bra to sleep in. I really like it. I started using Miaderm again (used it during radiation and for a couple of weeks afterwards). I have noticed that I have less itching and fewer shooting pains. I have started putting it on the scar from the sentinel node removal - that is still the sorest spot though surgery was more than a year ago - end of October 2018. Note that I also use CBD oil for arthritis and that could also help with the residual post-surgical pain.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I had lumpectomy 11/11/19 radiation 12/16-1/21/20 and am in increasing pain. Chest tightness and pain (hurts to turn head along top of chest just below neck) weird tingling shooting pains through center of chest that come and go all the time, back and neck pain. Been to heart, lung, gastro, breast surgeon, radiation doctors- no one finds anything, someone has mentioned  Costochondritis but not how to manage it!! Maybe fibromyalgia?? Pain is real snd becoming debilitating! Help!

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I just wanted to add that I am comforted by this thread!  I started having worsening pain about 10-11 months post surgery, which was a few weeks ago, and I have been worrying about it - but frankly too exhausted from the constant pain to try and gather my thoughts about it.  I wondered if it could be where I had overdone it with a too heavy weight at the gym, or whether on doing my monthly self exam I had prodded too hard...  I haven't really felt comfortable since surgery (large boobs = not well supported in non-wired bras, even top end, expensive ones that promise good support!) and has just about got used to the aching.  And then it started to actually hurt a bit and of course I started to worry.  I think that it's an evolving situation (fingers crossed...)

Thank you all for posting about this xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi, 

i had my first mammogram after 14 months too but they found micro calcification underneath on surgical sites, they want to remove the white specks for biopsy test but it’s very difficult to get it out because it’s on my surgical site so they reckon it might be during the surgery or radiotherapy and it’s 100% benign so they will monitor me every 6 months, having mammogram this coming Thursday hoping it’s gone. 

 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

@Bungee

I had my first mammogram 14 months after the surgery - it came back clear. I hope yours does too. Wishing you all the best.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi, 

I got the same situation as you, occasional shooting pain and lumpiness. I had lumpectomy last June 2018. Just wandering if this is normal. I’m having my mammogram on January 30 hopefully nothing to worry. 

 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Thanks for your post. Fifteen months post lumpectomy and 10 post radiation. 17mm tumour, sentinel node only removed and clear. Similar to what you describe - occasional shooting pains, lumpiness, and fierce itching which began only recently. Indeed, as my surgeon says, radiation is the gift that keeps giving. My first post surgical mammogram, done 14 months after surgery, was clear, so not worried. Mostly I try to ignore it, but not so easy sometimes. Trying different creams - have even gone back to using my leftover Miaderm. They tell me it gets better - 

 

Wishing you all a good new year, with good health at the top of the list.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I too suffer from breast discomfort, shooting pains, aches etc every so often 2 years post lumpectomy. Only had sentinel node biopsy which was clear but the scar gets achy and sore at times. I had to lose nipple as lump was too close and only 3 weeks ago I had the last bit of nipple reconstruction-the tattooing. This seems to have woken up some nerves! It got very sore towards the end but I’m pleased with the results. What I have noticed though is I’m getting warm sensations on and off in that breast now. Not had that for a long time. No pains as such. Does anyone else still get warm sensations? Wondering if the tattooing has irritated nerves or something. BCN examined me last week at check up and everything good. Didn’t mention warm feelings though as it hadn’t happened then. BCN said women can have aches, pains etc for years. Shame no one bothered to tell us and stop many of us being so very scared our cancer was back. Same goes for long term, late side effects of radiotherapy. I escaped chemo as lump was only 8mm and no nodes involved. Am on the delightful Anastrazole though. Was great the first year or so and no side effects. I’m sure  making up for it now. Apparently late side effects of Anastrazole is common too. 

Take care ladies and any men. Look after yourselves and be kind to yourself.

hugs

Frances xxx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I had all sorts of shooting pain for the first year but now I'm left with a different kind of pain so I think it just all evolves over time.  As I said in a previous post, the radiographer who did my recent mammogram said she has ladies still having discomfort 10 years on!  If it is playing n your mind call your BCN and see if they can see you to reassure you but I think it is probably just par for the course.  Makes it difficult to judge what's normal and what isn't though doesn't it? xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

I had a lumpectomy in March 2019.  Had a follow up mammogram in August.  It was fine.  Just recently I started to have shooting pain in my breast.  I've been taking Arimedix (think that's how it is spelled) since the surgery.  I am scared to death that something is really wrong.  But now that I've read here that a lot of women have experienced the same thing I'm not so worried.  But if it doesn't stop I will call my surgeon.  

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Snap! Had mine a week last Friday and told 2 to 3 weeks for results. Since then I've been nothing but anxious. Xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi Snottydotty

Just to let you know I am experiencing the same as you. It is worrying feeling "lumps and bumps" I agree. I wasn't informed of this either. I had my second mammogram last Friday and am obviously worried about the results. I was told when I had my mammogram last year I would have to wait 10 days but this time I was told up to 3 weeks which I think is ridiculous. I'll be (am!) a nervous wreck!!

xx

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Thank you. That's very kind. Hope all goes well for you too x

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Hi snottydotty. Sorry you experienced so much pain on your mammogram.  I am due to go for my 2nd on 4th December. Last year someone on this forum advised me to request it to be done manually as it would be more comfortable than the 100 mile a hour flattening that is the norm!!!! It certainly seemed more bearable, although the nurses were a little 'snippy' when I requested it because they have to put a bit of effort into it I guess. I was also advised to take a couple of pain killers half hour before. I will be trying to do.this again this year!! I hope you feel ok now and you get the best result🤞🤞🤞🙌🙌🙌💗💗💗

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Only just seen this but I feel exactly the same. I wish someone could have told me at the time that over 18 months on from radiotherapy my breast tissue would be constantly changing still and it's hard to know what's normal and what isn't.  For peace of mind with hindsight I think a mastectomy should have been my preferred option. But my BCN was adamant I didn't need it. I can only assume she knows that a mastectomy can bring worse problems of their own. But I do wish I'd been more fully informed. Been for my second mammogram since treatment and the pain was excruciating. The radiographer said it was common for people to still be having discomfort TEN years later. But the pain I can cope with, it's all the unfamiliar lumps and bumps that cause me great anxiety. 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

There is no such thing as a stupid question when you are in pain!  
I started having sharp stabbing pain under my incision for a lumpectomy I had 6 weeks ago.  I am calling my surgeon’s office in the morning.

 

I happen to be an RN with a Bachelor’s degree and many years of experience.

 

You need the peace of mind that is available. Knowing the cause of your discomfort is the first step in finding a way to deal with it.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

There is no such thing as a stupid question when you are miserable.  I am 6 weeks after my lumpectomy and today I suddenly felt a sharp stabbing pain under the incision.  Tomorrow I am calling my surgeon.  I hope you will also contact  your doctor’s office for advice.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

This is me! Intermittent, no pattern to when pain starts or stops. I seem to be sensitive to any pain. Being a nurse has not made my anxiety less. 

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

So reassuring to me to read this l too am suffering in silence with alot of pain inthe side of my breast and under armpit l worry about it so much...love to all you ladies.

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Re: Breast pain 18 months after lumpectomy

Welcome to the forum Trixe.I still have sensitive boob 4 years on .