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Topic: Enlarged axillary lymph nodes after COVID vaccine

Forum: All things COVID-19 or coronavirus —

A place to discuss the impact of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) on you and the ones you love.

Posted on: Apr 1, 2021 08:16PM

orangeflower wrote:

FYI - I got a non-contrast CT scan today due to a cough, and my lungs were clear, but they found that my axillary lymph nodes on the breast cancer side were "borderline enlarged" and it was "nonspecific" (whatever that means). It's the same side where I got the first COVID vaccine shot three weeks ago, and the oncology nurse said the vaccine is a possible cause. I'm waiting to hear back from my oncologist about what happens next. Obviously, I'm worried because it's on the cancer side. I read that the COVID vaccine-related axillary lymph node swelling can happen on the side where you get the shot, and I wish someone had told me this before I got the vaccine so I could have gotten it on the right side instead. Now I am worried about recurrence. If you haven't gotten the vaccine yet, I would talk to your doctor about this issue.

Dx 1/29/2020, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 2, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Surgery 2/24/2020 Mastectomy; Reconstruction (left): Tissue expander placement; Reconstruction (right): Tissue expander placement
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Apr 5, 2021 01:44PM wallycat wrote:

Yeah, my shot side swelled to the size of a small baseball and tender. It took quite a few days and I think most of the swelling is going down. I got the Moderna, which seems to have more side effects (larger dose per injection could be the cause). CDC and Mammogram centers are asking women NOT to schedule appointments because of how much of this they are seeing post covid vaccine.

Dx 4/07 1 month before turning 50; ILC 1.8cm, ER+/PR+, HER2 neg., Stage 1, Grade 2, 0/5 nodes. Onco score 20, Bilateral Mast., tamoxifen 3-1/2 years, arimidex-completed 4/20/2012
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Apr 7, 2021 06:55AM - edited Apr 7, 2021 06:55AM by TinyDancer5

My Gynecologist's office sent me via email last month regarding the Covid vax and swollen armpits.

I thought I'd share it, BUT check with YOUR Doctor.

Mammograms and Covid Vaccines

One sided "swollen glands" in the armpit or collarbone area (unilateral axillary or super-clavicular lymphadenopathy) are a common side effect of the Moderna COVID vaccine, and also less frequently seen with the Pfizer vaccine. Vaccines of all types can result in temporary swelling of the lymph nodes, which may be a sign that the body is making antibodies in response as intended.

Because these swollen glands can be confused with signs of breast cancer, screening mammograms should be scheduled either before the first dose of the vaccine or four to six weeks after the second dose.

Diagnostic mammograms (for a breast abnormality) should not be delayed, but the date of the vaccine as well as the location (right or left arm) will be noted on the requisition for any mammogram which is scheduled after a recent COVID-19 vaccination.


Diagnosed at age 51. Dx 5/28/2015, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 3, 0/4 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ Surgery 6/22/2015 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Targeted Therapy 8/19/2015 Kadcyla (T-DM1, ado-trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 11/9/2015 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 1/18/2016 Tamoxifen pills (Nolvadex, Apo-Tamox, Tamofen, Tamone) Hormonal Therapy 8/25/2016 Surgery 1/23/2020 Prophylactic ovary removal Hormonal Therapy 2/25/2020 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Apr 7, 2021 08:22AM ctmbsikia wrote:

Sorry orangeflower-I hope and trust all will be good!

I too am winging it. Got my 1st shot on Monday, in my right arm. Going for diagnostic mammo only on my left breast on the 15th (follow up birads 3). Both were important, I'm sure they'll ask and I'll tell them and trust nothing regarding this vaccine shows up. I feel fine, btw. No swelling. Got Moderna.

Dx 12/14/2017, DCIS/IDC, Left, 4cm, Stage IIB, Grade 2, 1/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Dx 1/16/2018, LCIS, Right Surgery 1/30/2018 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Radiation Therapy 4/10/2018 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 6/25/2018 Arimidex (anastrozole)
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Apr 7, 2021 10:32AM - edited Apr 7, 2021 10:37AM by RavenSally

I have swollen lymph's and pain two weeks after the moderna shot, but on the opposite side of the vaccination. So it's on the cancer side. Since it's supposed to be on the same side as the vaccine, I have a bit of worry it's a recurrence. I'm going in for full mammogram and ultrasound next week. Has anyone had the swelling on the opposite side?

Dx 6/19/2015, IDC, Left, 1cm, Stage IA, Grade 1, 0/2 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2+ (IHC) Surgery 7/22/2015 Lumpectomy: Left; Lymph node removal: Sentinel Chemotherapy 8/24/2015 Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel) Chemotherapy 8/25/2015 Targeted Therapy 8/25/2015 Herceptin (trastuzumab) Radiation Therapy 1/4/2016 Whole-breast: Breast Hormonal Therapy 4/28/2016 Arimidex (anastrozole) Chemotherapy Carboplatin (Paraplatin), Taxotere (docetaxel)

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