Hi, lymphoma is among the least likely causes. So don't panic :) Some infection or immune reaction is more likely.
What is the size of the largest bump? How fast did the bumps come up? Was it mostly overnight for each bump, even though they didn't all come up over the same night?
Where exactly do you mean by "on his chest plate"?
You are saying that each bump is under the skin, not part of the skin like a callous would be part of the skin, right?
Well, let's see if we can make some progress. We'll start in no particular order by trying to differentiate between tuberculosis and lymphoma.
Can you closely listen to his breathing, ear to chest? TB can make lymph nodes enlarge but it usually starts in the lungs.
Can you feel if his liver is enlarged? It's on the right side below the ribs, please find an anatomy diagram somewhere on the web. Also check the spleen on the opposite side.
I'd asked about the 'chest plate' (sternum/breastbone) because there are no lymph nodes there. So whatever is there gives a clue about why the nodes are enlarged. Can you verify that it does or doesn't look anything like *any* of the pictures here: https://www.semanticscholar.org/paper/Cutaneous-tuberculosis-in-Hong-Kong%3A-an-update.-Ho-Ho/68cbed44e8e3488eb4ee85f9c379378daf95e0c3/figure/5
Is this the place of the node above the elbow? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supratrochlear_lymph_nodes
Have there been any news report of TB where you are?
Any cat around that might have scratched him?
We also need to be sure you're not talking about the xiphoid process, which is like a bone or hard cartilage that hangs down from the lowest part of the sternum: http://www.innerbody.com/anatomy/skeletal/xiphoid-process-sternum
If his lung sounds have a 'crackle' or anything obviously abnormal, that might be a clue that could be followed up on a TB forum.
Here is Dallas County stats:
and some type of clinic or something related, not for right now but just to keep in mind:
By stomach/belly, do you mean near the navel? There is a chain of nodes there.
Would you say it's the part of the sternum called the manubrium on this graphic: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sternum
(upper right of page)
Well, this is unfortunately not my sphere. What I can think of is looking at Differential Diagnosis pages that can be found.
Or we can take the optimistic approach and web search for something like--> benign sternum tumors
A tumor can be benign or cancer.
If it's benign, the nodes would be reacting to the same infection or inflammation that caused the sternum bump. If it's cancer, the nodes are metastases. I don't know if a cancer in the lungs can metastasize to the supertrochlear node (above the elbow). But offhand it doesn't seem likely.
I would guess, but don't know, that if it was cancer in the sternum it would be painful if pressed on.
I did take a brief look around and it all seems very complicated, with no clear indication either way.
When he gets home, can you feel above the collarbones, especially on the left side, for any bumps?
We can look here: https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/encyclopedia/content.aspx?contenttypeid=22&contentid=chestwalltumors
...which seems to say that malignant is usually painful but benign is usually not painful.
Symptoms of Chest Wall Tumors
People with malignant chest wall tumors might experience one or more of the following:
Pain or soreness
Impaired movement or chest expansion
Protrusion as with a lump
People with benign chest wall tumors might experience one or more of the following:
Protrusion as with a lump
Pain (with certain types)
Muscle atrophy (with certain types)
Diagnosing Chest Wall Tumors
The process usually begins with a complaint of pain or pressure from the patient. After conducting a general exam, the physician likely will order an x-ray. But x-rays tend to show only that there is an abnormality. They aren’t necessarily able to indicate whether the tumor is malignant or benign. A CT (computed tomography) or MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan can zero in on the location and size of the tumor, as well as give some information about what type it is.
Once this preliminary information is collected, steps will be taken to conduct a biopsy—that is, to remove and examine a sample of the tumor. The most common procedure is an aspiration biopsy, in which a needle is inserted into the tumor and cells are removed for examination. Sometimes, if it’s difficult or impossible to get at the tumor cells using a needle, the patient might undergo an open biopsy, a surgical procedure that can leave a small scar. It is from these cell samples that the tumor is fully diagnosed.
Here's an offbeat thought: in most or all states, you can order blood tests on your own. A test called LDH can go high in lymphoma and lung cancer and many other cancers, too.
Here's on example place: https://www.walkinlab.com/liver-profile-1-baseline-blood-test-panel.html
It's in a bundle that costs $34. Other places might be cheaper or have monthly specials. It's a front end business, the actual blood tests are done at the same places they are always done when ordered by docs etc, Quest and LabCorp.
Here is a sample value, not to be read now but saved for possibly later:
Last for today, here's an example of benign inflammatory sternum tumors. It's about teenagers, but anyway it shows that some sternum tumors can be mysterious in origin but still benign, and even go away on their own after a few months.
"Self-limiting sternal tumors of childhood (SELSTOC)."
Yes, this must be extremely difficult for you. Sometimes it's even worse for a family member than for the patient. Maybe learning as much as you can will make you feel less helpless. There's a lot to absorb, so it's natural to feel overwhelmed.
Here's a wholly different way to view of all of this: we don't even know for certain at this point if any of the bumps are actually lymph nodes. It's theoretically possible that something got deposited on the sternum and also at the other spots. Some kind of nodules. If that's the case, everything can possibly be benign.
Probably the most important thing of all right now is to check for enlarged nodes above the collarbones. Take a look at how to do it, about 3/4 of the way down here:
(clavicle means collarbone, supra means 'above')
Are you saying that there are enlarged bumps above the collarbone? If so, on his left or right side?
Here is the most clear graphic: https://medsim.in/help/MedSimSoftwareDocumentation.docx_files/image167.jpg
What about any lung sounds, like wheezing or crackling?
You can consider getting a chest x-ray, approx $85.Maybe this is a good site, I don't know: