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Topic: New here! And neoadjuvant armpit pain?

Forum: Stage III Breast Cancer — You are not alone. Meet others who have Stage III breast cancer.

Posted on: May 28, 2021 06:34PM

JustKeepSwimmin wrote:

Hi all,

I'm new here but I'm six months since diagnosis, still on neoadjuvant chemo for stage 3 triple-pos, 3.6cm tumor (multifocal) with one lymph node identified on MRI. I'm 48 with a wonderful husband and two kids. Like all of us this has pretty much turned everything upside down!

I have one chemo left and then mastectomy. The tumor hasn't moved much... only shrunk 3mm but it is taking up much less contrast on MRI (if you view just the contrast, that has shrunk a ton and seems almost gone). Nobody can say what that means (has anyone here had that happen?) but the oncologist thinks it could maybe be killing the cancer but leaving a shell. Guess we'll find out!

Can I ask if anyone has experienced this? I don't see anyone mentioning it anywhere.

When I palpated my lump back in December, I had no symptoms and the lymph nodes were identified as normal on US. Very quickly I started to get a buzz in my armpit, within two weeks one node was 14mm on MRI and then by the time chemo started five weeks later, it was a pinch. That still happens now, five months later. Also I sometimes get a bit of a mild burning sensation in the upper chest on cancer side where you would place a corsage. Now, I tend to tense that side, so it could be muscular or nerve compression too... 🤷

Anyway, with all these weird sensations I envision like 20 affected nodes and cancer spilling everywhere! Gah!

Has anyone else experienced this? Would love your perspective!


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May 29, 2021 02:44PM trinigirl50 wrote:

I had 20 affected nodes and felt nothing at all. They were removed before chemo. During chemo I had all kinds of strange zings and pinches and weird pains.

I still have weird pains and pinches and zings 6 years later (I assume it's scar tissue and nerves coming back to life after surgery chemo and radiation.

trinigirl50 Dx 3/7/2015, ILC, Left, 6cm+, Stage IIIC, Grade 2, 20/24 nodes, ER+/PR-, HER2- Surgery 3/7/2015 Lymph node removal: Underarm/Axillary; Mastectomy: Left; Prophylactic mastectomy: Right Chemotherapy 4/14/2015 AC + T (Taxotere) Hormonal Therapy 9/14/2015 Arimidex (anastrozole), Femara (letrozole) Radiation Therapy 10/1/2015 Whole-breast: Breast, Lymph nodes
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May 29, 2021 06:16PM JustKeepSwimmin wrote:

Thanks Trinigirl! It's so hard to know what to expect, I figure if I can feel a painful node when most feel nothing it must be everywhere. So glad to see you are doing well six years later! 🤗

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May 30, 2021 06:59AM Moderators wrote:

Hi JustKeepSwimmin and sorry you've joined the "club". It can be very difficult to manage the aches, pains, sensations emotionally when we don't know what is going on. When is your surgery planned? We're glad you found us here, and please keep us posted!

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Jun 17, 2021 07:34AM Lucca06 wrote:

JustKeepSwimmin I had loads of aches and pains both before and after chemo and mastectomy. Still do get the odd one! It is such a hard time and your whole body is struggling. I think I had the burning too, but remember my oncologist saying it was probably a good sign that the chemo was working. Also my tumour didn't shrink much in diameter but it got lots of holes in it and the chemo sort of broke it down. I was 43 when diagnosed with 2 kids of 2 & 4, it was a tough time but I passed 10 years from diagnosis in March and am healthier than I can remember.

Dx 3/23/2011, ILC, Right, 6cm+, Stage IIIB, Grade 2, 9/18 nodes, ER+/PR+, HER2- Chemotherapy 4/2/2011 Surgery 8/22/2011 Lymph node removal: Right; Mastectomy: Right; Prophylactic ovary removal; Reconstruction (right): Fat grafting, SGAP flap/hip flap
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Jun 17, 2021 08:36AM JustKeepSwimmin wrote:

Thanks for replying Lucca! So happy to see you're 10 years out, that gives me hope! ❤ You're right, the aches and pinches and buzzes do make you wonder... it's hard to know what is normal or what to expect.

I had my last chemo on Friday and SMX will be July 6. 👍 Time to get this thing out!

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