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Rib Pain

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Hi,

approx a year ago, I started with a pain in my ribs on my left side (cancer was on my right). I waited it out to see if it would go away and it didn’t. In the fall, I got an X-ray and ct scan (w & w/o contrast) of the area. Ribs looked fine, but there was a cyst on spleen that the report suggests may be source of pain. My MO looked at the images herself to make sure and doesn’t think that’s the source of my pain. But she has no idea why I have the pain. Ow the pain is getting worse.

I guess I’d like to know, if it were to intact be mets, could it be missed on a ct scan? Is there a better type of imitating to be had? (Ex: MRi, PET scan, etc). They’re just chalking it up to a bruised rib or something like that, that is just taking a while to go away. My last scan was in Decmember.

Thanks in advance

Comments

  • cathy67
    cathy67 Member Posts: 411
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    kringle12,

    I don't know this at all, however I want to remind you that, once you have any concerns, no matter how light it is, report to your MO immediately, I think you have routine follow up with her, right?

    I reported a tiny lump last visit (mine is 3 months follow up for lupron injection), he ordered to do next routine immediately plus ultrasound, it turned out the one I report is fine, but they found a new suspicion lesion, now I am waiting for biopsy.

    I wish you a good result.

  • RebeccaA
    RebeccaA Member Posts: 11
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    HI Kringle12,

    Just wondering whether you've gotten any more information. I started having pain on my left side. The side rib area is tender to the touch and the pain fluctuates. It feels as though there should be a bruise but there is nothing. At times, there has been some pain in the upper abdomen area just below where there rib is sore. I first thought maybe a pulled muscle, but that should have gotten better by now. I had a regular checkup scheduled with my primary care physician on Tuesday. He thought maybe kidney stones and ordered an ultrasound. It was inconclusive, so he is ordering a CT scan. I have an oncology checkup later this month, so I may try to wait until I talk to him before having the CT scan done, unless the pain intensifies.


  • sunshine99
    sunshine99 Member Posts: 2,627
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    rebeccaa, have you had a bone scan with nuclear medicine? It might show "hot spots" if, in fact, there are lesions on your ribs. It's worth mentioning to your MO.

    Carol


  • kringle12
    kringle12 Member Posts: 14
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    Thanks for your reply, somehow I missed it. I did bring it up and the PA just shrugged it off saying that the scans were clear, give it time :/ I see my MO again in October. Maybe they’ll run new scans then. It’s still bugging me.

  • kringle12
    kringle12 Member Posts: 14
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    Hi! What your explaining is exactly how my pain feels. Nothing has changed from when I posted this, but I’m going to bring it up again to my MO when I see her in October. Keep us posted on the CT scan!

  • kbl
    kbl Member Posts: 2,729
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    I’m having pretty intense pain in my ribs back by my kidney. I had it intermittently a few months back, but now it’s constant and very painful. It seems to be intensifying. If you ever find out what your pain is from, can you please report. I told my MO the other day, and he didn’t suggest anything. Ugh.

  • sunshine99
    sunshine99 Member Posts: 2,627
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    kbl, it seems with new/increased/constant pain that SOMETHING is going on and needs to be evaluated. I would think some sort of scan would be appropriate. Can you ask your MO why he's not concerned? Maybe he didn't understand that it's getting worse.

  • kbl
    kbl Member Posts: 2,729
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    Sunshine99, I don’t usually see him, I’m more comfortable with nurse practitioner. He acts a little weird when we’re together and always has a student come see me first. He also writes in report that my heart and lungs are clear when he never touches me. I’m going to be glad to be moving to a different office. Today the pain is not so bad. It changes daily, so I’ll wait until it’s more consistent. Not too worried about it at this point.

  • kringle12
    kringle12 Member Posts: 14
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    My pain is a little worse than a year ago. I mentioned it to the nurse and they’re going to give me another cat scan in a couple weeks to see if anything shows up now. Other than that, the dr has no idea why I have the pain

  • shiane2
    shiane2 Member Posts: 6
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    Looking for support/guidance, truthfully I am at my wits end. I am currently 45 yr old. My history: At 31 yr old, dx with left breast IDC (T2N0) in 2008, s/p chemo (TAC), radiation, lumpectomy. Right breast hyperplasia found in 2013; underwent repeat genetic testing and found to have ATM heterozygous mutation, recommended for mastectomy due to this. Underwent bilateral mastectomy 2015 followed by bilateral SGAP reconstruction 2016-2017. I have been well since then without pain or issues until about 10/2021 when I started having intense pain beneath right upper ribcage, around side of right ribcage and to right upper back. Had appendix and gallbladder removed 12/2021 as this was suspected as cause however pain never went away and has gotten progressively worse. Have had thorough eval with gastroenterologist who says it's not GI related as there is no correlation to food, and referred me back to my old oncologist just to be safe (haven't had to see in several years/since mastectomy). Over the last 8 months have had multiple scans to include thoracic MRI, CT chest/abd/pelvis w/contrast, MRI abdomen with and w/out contrast, CT chest w/out contrast, all with stable findings-some known, stable pancreatic cysts and liver hemangioma. No tumor markers completed as my PCP feels they will only lead to unnecessary testing and will not order them. I have no further follow up with oncologist but he did refer me to pain management. The consensus is that this is musculoskeletal pain however no etiology has been found. Pain management dr thinks may be intercostal neuralgia possibly due to prior breast surgeries despite those surgeries being over 4yr ago. Tried lyrica, can't tolerate sd effects, never tolerated narcotics well so avoiding those. Intercostal nerve block x 1 has not helped, pending 2nd block in 2 wks however PM dr doesn't think Im going to get any relief as first one really didn't help. My PCP is very dismissive so I don't know what else to do. The pain is debilitating when it is at its worst, heating pad is only relief and that is very temporary relief. Cannot lie on right side and some nights the pain wakes me up but also have daytime pain that seems to be related to activity or sitting to long? I have this overwhelming feeling something is very wrong however all my testing has been stable to date. My mother passed away from metastatic breast cancer 11/2021 just 10months after she was diagnosed so I know I have increased anxiety given this and my own history.

    Wondering if any of you ladies have had a similar experience and ended up finding out you did in fact have metastasis later down the road? Appreciate any and all advice/stories/support.

  • sunshine99
    sunshine99 Member Posts: 2,627
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    shiane2, have you had a nuclear medicine bone scan? It's the one where they inject you with the radioactive stuff (or whatever it is) and then a couple of hours later they scan you head to toe.

    Carol

  • shiane2
    shiane2 Member Posts: 6
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    Carol, I have not had nuclear med bone scan. I think all my docs feel it's nothing sinister, however it sure feels unlike any other pain I've ever had. I don't even know who I would ask to order this test. Does this show more that the other imaging I have already had ?

    Dee

  • rah2464
    rah2464 Member Posts: 1,192
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    Shiane2 I am going to concur with Carol and suggest you ask the question about the nuclear bone scan. That is a test your oncologist is more likely to order but I don't know about imaging clarity compared to some of your other tests perhaps someone more knowledgeable will come along.

    One thing is for sure - you have significant, life disruptive pain and you need help determining cause and treatment. It is worth any conversation you have to have in order to get traction on this.

    There are other things that can happen due to surgical injury such as damage to that intercostal nerve or even a condition known as CRPS (complex regional pain syndrome). However I am with you this is quite a few years post surgery so that is confusing.

    Please keep pushing for answers. Only you know your body and how it feels.

  • shiane2
    shiane2 Member Posts: 6
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    Rah2464, thank you so much for the advice. Need that push, really considering eval at Mayo as don’t think my local docs will look further. Appreciate the help!

  • kringle12
    kringle12 Member Posts: 14
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    So, since my rib pain has been increasing more, the dr sent me for another ct scan. The splenic cyst has almost doubled. Im wondering if that is the cause of the pain after all?

    in other ct scan results, I got these comments:

    Liver: Again noted is a 0.6 cm low-attenuation lesion in hepatic segment VI (201:40). Reevaluation with MRI may be helpful given this lesions increase in conspicuity.

    Kidneys: Again noted is a 1.3 x 1.1 cm cystic lesion in the upper pole of the left kidney with present density of 18 Hounsfield units previously measuring 1.2 cm with a density of 6 Hounsfield units. Reevaluation MRI is recommended given change in density over time.

    They’re recommending MRI for the kidney portion too. Anyone have insight on what any of this means? I’m a little concerned on those now

    Thank you