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Pain on left side
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Pain on left side

Hello,

Let me start with a brief background.I am a 33 year old female. Ex smoker, I quit 3 years ago. Have some mild asthma that has occasionally needed a rescue inhaler. Have always had a slight cough, maybe due to allergies?  Anyway, About a year ago I under went a cardio work up due to PVCs.All  came back well but during that testing I developed a pain under my left breast. It came and went, never very sharp but dull ache. My PCP did a full work up, sonogram of my upper ab., Chest Xray, spine xray.... all came back well.Then she went on to have a Chest CT Scan with contrast (about 8 months ago) and after that a thoracic MRI. She said all came back good except for a slight slipped disc in my neck.... She said it very well could be stress and psychosomatic pain.

Let me add to this by saying I am under huge stress,my  father is very sick with cancer and in and our of the hospital, I have 3 small kids and I work full time. I also suffer from health anxiety which is typically under control but it spikes when I get reoccurring aches and pains..

So about a month or so ago I noticed a throbbing pain where my left breast ends, about 5 inches down from my arm pit.It comes and goes, and had gradually gotten a bit more noticeable. It will last a few seconds, then stop, then last a few seconds, then stop.... Sometimes I go days without having it, other times I will have it every few minutes all day. Breathing deeply and exhaling can make it worse sometimes and sometimes changing my position can make it feel better. If I lay down with my left arm kind of extended above my head (almost stretching that area) it seems to help the throbbing go away.

So, my question is this.... Is this a symptom that you have ever found with lung cancer?  Most people I talk to have said it is stress and some kind of muscle / skeletal thing but I wanted to ask you as well and what you would recommend.Thank you very much!

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Dear dolphin8808,

Lung cancers are easily picked up on CT / MRI scans. As all the workups done are normal,  I don't suspect lung cancer in your case. I could not agree more with your physicians that the pain you are having is muscle/skeletal related. A throbbing pain which is related to posture looks quite innocuous to me.

Smoking is associated with spectrum of chest problems. It is good that you have quit smoking.  Your bronchitis and asthma like symptoms will improve with time.

I understand you are worried about the prospects of developing lung cancer but I do not find any basis to suspect lung cancer. So do not worry. You may do well with some exercise like stretching and yoga.

Hope that this information helps and hope that you will get better soon.

Thank you for using MedHelp's "Ask an Expert" Service, where we feature some of world's renowned medical experts in their fields. Millions have benefitted from our service to get personalized advice for them and for their loved ones.

Best Regards,
Dr. Indranil Ghosh
3 Comments
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1701959_tn?1399378594
Oh and today I had a chest xray which showed a bit of possible bronchitus (bronchitis) in my lower right lung. I am on antibiotics and using my inhaler as needed. Still no explaination for the on again off again pain in my left side though :(
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