What are signs of breast cancer coming back? What do I do?

Posted by gor @gor, Aug 26 6:39pm

Had bc 21 yrs ago it was before stage 2 in the milk duct was confined had lumpectomy and radiation.Now have a rash under breast going into arm pit and back very itchy and sore.could this be it’s coming back

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Welcome, @gor. The temptation to worry about any unusual sign or symptom possibly indicating that breast cancer is back. It's every cancer survivor's biggest fear. In fact, @sclark3 just posted earlier today about feeling off – a strong gut feeling that something's not right. As I said to her, you know your body better than anyone. If something isn't right, it's time to get a professional opinion.

The first thing to do is to make an appointment as soon as possible with your primary care physician. They will do tests and rule out all possible causes. If they suspect possible return of cancer, they will refer you back to your cancer team.

In my non-medical opinion, I wonder if you might be experiencing shingles, @gor. Here's some information about shingles from Mayo Clinic.
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/shingles/symptoms-causes/syc-20353054
Does this sound like what you are experiencing?

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I would love to be able to say this couldn’t be breast cancer, but I will say it doesn’t sound like any I have ever heard of. I hope you can keep from agonizing about this.
I have a question, since this sounds like it is one side only, does it run along a line? I ask because it almost sounds like when I had shingles. It itched like the dickens and hurt at the same time. If treated early there are antivirals than can really help.
Can you reach out to a primary care doctor, and have this rash looked at?

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@colleenyoung

Welcome, @gor. The temptation to worry about any unusual sign or symptom possibly indicating that breast cancer is back. It's every cancer survivor's biggest fear. In fact, @sclark3 just posted earlier today about feeling off – a strong gut feeling that something's not right. As I said to her, you know your body better than anyone. If something isn't right, it's time to get a professional opinion.

The first thing to do is to make an appointment as soon as possible with your primary care physician. They will do tests and rule out all possible causes. If they suspect possible return of cancer, they will refer you back to your cancer team.

In my non-medical opinion, I wonder if you might be experiencing shingles, @gor. Here's some information about shingles from Mayo Clinic.
https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/shingles/symptoms-causes/syc-20353054
Does this sound like what you are experiencing?

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No I’ve had shingles and had the shinglitz shots this is a red rash no blisters under breast going under arm into back very very itchy I had cancer confined to milk duct lumpectomy and radiation am very afraid it’s come back

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@gor

No I’ve had shingles and had the shinglitz shots this is a red rash no blisters under breast going under arm into back very very itchy I had cancer confined to milk duct lumpectomy and radiation am very afraid it’s come back

Jump to this post

It doesn’t take much to arose our worst fears; this symptom is stressful physically and mentally. Personally I’m not aware of rash as a possible indicator of bc but it’s time to check in with your doctor and get a professional opinion and/or diagnosis. Hoping it’s NOT what you are fearing. I’ll be thinking of you. Please check back in. 💗

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I have experience with breast cancer in the skin…

By the time I started treatment for very aggressive TNBC the cancer was in my skin. This was after I found an almond sized lump docs thought was tied to the pregnancy I had just finished, and the almond grew to a lime in a couple months then imagining showed activity in lymph nodes and chest wall.

The cancer in my skin presented as redness, very puckered skin, and searing, horrible pain that came and went and had me writhing and crying for pain killers.

If you can't get in to see a doc soon, maybe you could go to an urgent care? If they can see you and prescribe a treatment that makes the rash go away that could answer the question.

Wishing you best of luck and that it's something that can be cleared up soon.

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@gor

No I’ve had shingles and had the shinglitz shots this is a red rash no blisters under breast going under arm into back very very itchy I had cancer confined to milk duct lumpectomy and radiation am very afraid it’s come back

Jump to this post

Hi @gor, just checking in and to let you know I'm thinking of you. Any update?

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