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Pea size lump under arm?

Hi there,

I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice. First of all, let me preface this post by saying that I had severe health anxiety that seems to have centered on my breasts since my mom passed away from breast cancer last year at the age of 47.

Last month, I was doing a self breast exam and noticed a lumpy sort of area on my inner upper right breast. I went to the doctor and she said it felt like a cyst, as I have been diagnosed with fibrocystic breasts. She scheduled an ultrasound though because of my mom's history but said not to worry too much as I am 26 and it really didn't feel like anything alarming. She also did a clincal breast exam of course, including my whole breast and armpit area. She said the rest felt fine. I had the ultrasound and got the all clear and they said it was all just fibroglandular tissue. I'm not sure if the scanned the whole breast or not, I can't remember.

Well, about 2 weeks ago, I started getting some pain in my right breast, but in a different spot. I couldn't feel a lump and since I stopped poking and prodding that area, the pain has 90% subsided and still there is no lump there. But, while I was poking around, I noticed a small, pea sized lump, just under my armpit. It is very round, and very mobile and kind of soft/squishy. maybe slightly firm. of course, I got completely freaked out that this was a swollen lymph node from a tumor somewhere in my breast that wasn't found on the exam or ultrasound. I haven't stopped poking it since and now it is sore. I asked my husband to feel it and he says it feels like nothing, maybe just tissue or a lymph node. I have to admit, it takes me a long time to find it and it doesn't stick out or anything, you have to be really prodding around. The trouble is, I'm not sure if it was there before (when I was getting the ultrasound and exam by my doctor). I think it may have been, but all my attention was focused on the other spot! I can't really find it just doing a regular exam, laying on my back with my arm up. There is a slightly smaller, less pronouned similar lump on the other side as well. I'm not sure what to do. I can't stop poking it and I'm so scared its something bad. I don't want to go to the doctor though, as I was JUST there are she just did an exam a month ago.

Is it safe to say that the doctor or the ultrasound would have picked up on this if it was something to be concerned about? Is it normal to be able to feel your lymph nodes if they are not enlarged? I'm pretty thin, so maybe that has something to do with it? Everything I've read says that pea sized lymph nodes are normal and not enlarged and that's how big it is.Then again, I don't even know if its a lymph node, but that's what I keep thinking.  I just  can't help from worrying. Do you think I'm over reacting, and what do you think my best course of action would be? Thank you so much for your time.
2 Responses
25201 tn?1255580836
If this lump is pea sized then I wouldn't even consider it to be "enlarged" and no doubt it is a lymphnode. i understand your anxiety due to your Mother's passing from Breast Cancer but this is something you will need to deal with and I would hope that it will lessen as time passes. I do think that you should be extra vigilant and perhaps be screened earlier than is normally advised.  Kindest regards ...
Avatar universal
Thank you for your reassurance. I'm sorry to sound so over-reactive. I guess I just have a big fear of waiting too long to go to the doctor because that is exactly what my mom did. But, I keep running there and thinking everything is a sign of trouble.

I really appreciate your time and kind words of reassurance.

God Bless!
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