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Painful lump/spots after lumpectomy not going away?

Breast Cancer | Last Active: Oct 30, 2023 | Replies (30)

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It sounds like you've just been through a lot with two surgeries, radiation and shingles. I had a mastectomy, not lumpectomy, but with my recurrent breast cancer in my chest, I had that tumor removed which would be more similar to your lumpectomy. I had radiation after the chest tumor removal. I had shingles 2.5 weeks after my mastectomy. I will say that I was constantly asking my doctors why this felt lumpy and that felt lumpy -- year after year. Nothing was flat as I had imagined it would be. No one ever really gave me a good answer. I heard scars, bone and some double-talk. I also still get random sharp pains 2.5 years after the chest wall tumor was removed. Had stabbing pains for years along my mastectomy scars, but I do have a keloid scarring disorder and had injections to stop that pain. I also have really bad tenderness where the chest wall tumor was removed 2.5 years ago and along my sides and parts of my chest 10 years after the mastectomy. I always assumed I was unique since I have a painful scarring disorder and a rare neuropathy that causes a lot of pain. However, in 10 years none of my providers that I ask about lumps, ridges, pains, tenderness, numbness ever seem surprised or concerned. I'm also curious to see how others respond here. Note: my recurrent cancer was not where I was complaining about lumps or tenderness. I didn't take an AI based on bad advice from my original oncologist and my current oncologist says I should have.

All that being said, that's me, every body reacts differently and we didn't have the exact same surgery. I had to look up seroma and that sounds viable and says it's common after breast surgery. If anything feels wrong to you, keep asking your providers about it and request another mammogram, MRI, ultrasound -- something to see what's going on. Even if nothing is wrong, worrying about it will drain you. If your team is not able to answer your questions to your satisfaction, seek a second opinion. Better safe than sorry. I hope it all settles down soon. Your post-radiation skin will go back to normal eventually. Radiation also gave me a lot of nerve pain toward the end of treatment. Wishing you the best.

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Thank-you so much for your info. I am sorry to hear of your journey, sounds like you have been thru the ringer and i hate hearing it but appreciate you sharing. Every tidbit on this board helps absorb it all and be more prepared.

I guess anything goes and there are aspects they just can't pinpoint and explain with certainty. My hub even said that as good as we feel about my MDs they really dont prepare you. I am a person who wants it told straight, tell me the good bad and ugly to better prepare. So many side issues I wasn't prepared for.

I will ask them and press a bit.
Wishing you all the best as well.

Fast forward my MD ordered an ultrasound and mammo for the seroma/scar tissue just to confirm. The radiologist saw tissue in the seroma and couldn't confirm that it was just a seroma so ordered a biopsy. The ultrasound pre biopsy saw an additional seroma (I had been telling them it seemed like 2 seperate lumpy areas) and so she punch biopsied both and also aspirated both to test fluid.

Thankfully all came back clear. Fat necrosis, scar tissue. Huge relief and thankful for the confirmation.