I often said the surgery part of my cancer treatment was the easiest. Not that there were no problems, but there was less pain than I expected and fewer side effects compared to chemo or radiation. I didn’t know that post-mastectomy pain and complications may come years later. One study found that up to one-half of mastectomy patients report pain three years out from surgery, and one-third reported pain nine years later.
The pain can come from damaged nerves, cut muscles, surgical adhesions, or changes in movement and posture following surgery. I’ve had all of these problems over the years following my radical mastectomy . The nerve damage that gave me creepy feelings along the scar and down the back of my arm got better over time, and I learned to compensate for the muscles I no longer had.
A few years ago, I started having pain along my sternum and collarbone that turned out to be from surgical adhesions. My skin was stick...
Symptoms Blurred vision or double vision (diplopia) Bone pain or tenderness of the breastbone (sternum) Chest pain Confusion Cough -- dry Fatigue Fever Headache Nausea Skin rash , including pinpoint red spots ( petechiae ), ulcers, or other skin lesions Sweating -- unusual, excessive at night Swollen glands Unintentional weight loss Note: People with a normal immune system may have no symptoms at all. Signs and tests Physical examination may reveal: Abnormal breath sounds Fast heart rate Fever Mental status changes Stiff neck Tests that may be done include: Blood culture CT scan of the head Sputum culture and stain Lung biopsy Bronchoscopy Spinal tap to obtain a sample of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) culture and other tests to check for signs of infection Chest x-ray Cryptococcal antigen test (looks for a certain molecule that the Cryptococcus fungus can shed into the blood)
Mycobacterial culture of bone marrow is a test to determine if tuberculosis or another similar bacteria are present in the bone marrow.
Culture - mycobacterial of bone marrow
How the test is performed
A bone marrow aspiration or biopsy is performed. A sample of bone marrow is placed in culture media specific for tuberculosis and other similar bacteria. It is then examined for growth at routine intervals. Sometimes an acid-fast stain is done initially to help with the diagnosis.
How to prepare for the test
You must sign an informed consent form before the bone marrow biopsy. It is important to remain as still as possible during the test. There is no other special preparation.
How the test will feel
The skin over the biopsy or aspiration site (usually the back of the hip or the sternum) will be cleansed. An anesthetic will be injected into the skin surrounding the site to numb the site. Even wi...
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