I am 39 years old and am having some moderate pain in my left underarm area. The underarm area also feels a little thicker than my right underarm, but just barely noticeable. I have had this pain on and off for about 10 months. The thickness hasn't gotten any worse nor has the pain. It is about the same. It usually hurts in my underarm and runs down to my elbow and sometimes into my left shoulder blade. My doctor told me that I had Bursitis in my left arm about seven years ago. To make matters worse, I fell flat on my back about two years ago and the left side of my upper back took most of the impact. The bursitis seems to have gotten worse as I have gotten older and since I fell. Back in the fall I had a weekend where my underarm and and elbow hurt so bad that I could barely raise my arm. That is the worst that it has probably ever been. Other than that, the pain seems to come and go and I am usually pain free most of the time except for maybe when the forecast is calling for rain, as funny as that sounds!
I have no lumps in my underarm area. I do regular self breast exams and have not found any kind of lumps or anything that alarm me. I had a mammogram and ultrasound when I was 34 to check a lump. It turned out to be nothing. I have my yearly physicals on time every year and have my clinical breast exams with no problems. My doctor says that I do not need another mammogram until I am 40 which will be this year. I should also mention that I was told by my doctor that I had fibrocystic disease when I was in my twenties. I have no history of breast cancer in my family. Sorry that this was so long, just wanted to make sure that I included any vital information. My question is, could the underarm pain be caused by the Bursitis? Thanks for your time in reading my question.
A bursa is defined as the space between a muscle tendon and a bony surface that reduces friction upon muscle movement. In the underarm area, there can be structures like these that may indeed cause the pain. This is usually brought about by stress or repeated movement of the muscles involved. However, it is better also to have the breast tissues checked. Pain can also arise if some breast tissues respond to hormonal stimulation that coincides with a woman's menstrual cycle. The moves that you did before, with the mammograms and breast exams, are very prudent indeed. I suggest that you resume regular breast screening at age 40 and continue with the breast exams.
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