Extreme Pain In Armpit For The Last Month

Question

Asked by creative66

Extreme Pain In Armpit For The Last Month

I've had extreme pain in armpit and arm for the last month. I had surgery in 2010 to remove a lipoma in that area and cancer was not found. In November 2011, the lumps came back and I had an ultrasound and mammogram in Jaunary 2012. They came back normal; they said it was fatty tissue. I felt more lumps and in May 2012 had another ultrasound at a different facility. I'd breast implants put in. My arm has been hurting on and off since the lumps came back, but this last month they are really hurting! Now I am freaking out thinking I have cancer! I am sitting here in pain and having an anxiety attack about this thing.

Answer

I also had to have a lipoma (fatty tumor) removed from my arm. Because I was just a couple of years out from a diagnosis of aggressive Stage IIIB inflammatory breast cancer, the surgeon said that it needed to come out even though he was pretty sure that it was just a harmless lipoma. In reading about lipomas at that time, I learned that some people will have multiple lipomas once they have had one. Usually when a situation with multiple lipomas exists, doctors do not keep operating. They are really confident at that point that they are dealing with lipomas and they don't want to create more scar tissue if it is not necessary.

It could be that one or more of the new lipomas are pressing on a nerve or displacing muscle in a painful way. Because the pain is extreme and has lasted a month, having more surgery to remove the new lipomas might be the route to go. The implant might have shifted in a way that causes this pain. As PJ mentions, you need to ask questions about your heart since this is pain radiating down your left arm. Researchers are learning that women's symptoms of cardiac problems are often different than the textbook descriptions, which had been based on men's symptoms.

We are not doctors here, so your doctors are the best people to advise the right course. It sounds like right now you are having trouble finding a doctor to take your pain seriously. Your regular doctor may take it more seriously now that it has continued longer than a menstrual cycle, or you may have to find a new doctor. But continue to be assertive to find out that cause of your pain. I don't think it will be breast cancer related, but you want to investigate every possibility.

Answered by Phyllis Johnson