• It has been 11months since I had the lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy. I am still experiencing pain in the breast. Is this normal?

    Asked by lindagrooms on Tuesday, November 20, 2012

    It has been 11months since I had the lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy. I am still experiencing pain in the breast. Is this normal?

    I also am experiencing swelling of the arm. Do I need to pursue physical therapy and or a sleeve? Thanks for any input in advance.

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • lynn1950's Avatar

      I am 4 1/2 years out from my bilateral mastectomy and axillary dissection and I still experience pain in my chest and armpit. It is from scar tissue. Like you, it concerns me and this year I actually had a cat scan which came back negative for a recurrence. I think it is normal to worry about this kind of pain, but I don't think such pain is unusual. You should always bring up any symptoms with your oncologist when you visit. Physical therapy may help you.

      almost 4 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      I've had both a lumpectomy and lymphectomy (18 years ago) and a bilateral mastectomy (earlier this year). I didn't have what I would call pain more than a week or so afterwards. I did develop some fibrous tissue after the lumpectomy that made it feel a bit hard, but it wasn't painful. I still have a lot of tightness after my mastectomy, but again, nothing that I would call pain. I would have your swelling and pain checked out. It could be lymphedema or some sort of infection/inflammation.

      almost 4 years ago
    • Myungclas' Avatar

      I had a lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy 2 and a half years ago and I still feel a little tender in the breast from time to time, especially after a long jog. My doc says its normal. The skin under my arm is still numb, and he says at this point it may stay that way. I would talk to your surgeon about the swelling, though. Seems like that should be cleared up by now.

      almost 4 years ago
    • JudyS's Avatar

      I had lumpectomy and sentinel node biopsy 3 years ago and still have the numbness under my arm and also have pain close to the scar when I push on that area. I'm told both the numbness and some pain by the scar is normal by both my surgeon and oncologist. I would definitely talk to the doctor about the swelling in your arm, they can point you in the right direction on what will help you the most - this is something you need to have taken of. Hoping that this all either gets better or reaches a point of toleration for you like it has for me!

      almost 4 years ago
    • mcowett's Avatar

      to answer you question Yes. Call your oncologist and they should refer you to a lymphedema clinic or specialist. My surgical arm had just started swelling, I'm only 4 months out from surgery. When your are is swollen does it feel tight? That's what mine is doing now.
      As far as the pain, it probably is scar tissue. They will be able to help you with that as well. From what I have read the sooner this is addressed the better it is managed long term - One woman I spoke with just last night said her swelling never came back after going through the physical therapy at the lymphedema clinic.

      almost 4 years ago
    • Miriam's Avatar

      Jus this morning I was telling my husband I was having pain in my surgical breast and it really bothered me. I just 1 year past my mastectomy and node biopsy. Since I had several surgeries on top of the mastectomy I thought it could be scar tissue. I also think it is normal to be concerned. A friend of mine wears a sleeve almost all the time and she says it has helped her swelling. Good luck.

      almost 4 years ago
    • gwendolyn's Avatar

      I think you should ask your doctor for a referral to a lymphedema therapist as soon as you can. If you do have lymphedema you should learn how to manage it before it gets more troublesome. Physical therapy will hopefully help with your surgical site pain, too.

      almost 4 years ago

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