Help, is bulging under arms normal?

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cahjah75
cahjah75 Member Posts: 2,631
edited March 2014 in Breast Cancer #1
I just took my 1st shower. My husband took the post-op bra off me and removed the bandages covering where the drains had been pulled. Everything looks ok considering I had bilateral mastectomies 11 days ago. What does concern me is the bulging at the end of each incision just above where the drains were removed. Is this normal? I have very little swelling near breast incisions but these swollen pockets are several inches below my armpit. Do they go away or is this something I should call my dr about?
Char

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  • Christine Louise
    Christine Louise Member Posts: 426 Member
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    Node removal?
    I had both deep pits and bulges due to having nodes removed. Did you have node removal that might account for this? There also was a bulgy place at the end of one incision where the surgeon just didn't do a very smooth job, I think. All have evened out some, five months post-surgery. But, I'm not sure that this is what you mean.

    Certainly, I would call the doctor's office about ANYTHING that concerns you.
  • Rague
    Rague Member Posts: 3,653 Member
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    Call your Dr.
    Call your Dr and talk to him/her. Is it firm or 'mushy' like there is fluid in it?
  • meena1
    meena1 Member Posts: 1,003
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    Rague said:

    Call your Dr.
    Call your Dr and talk to him/her. Is it firm or 'mushy' like there is fluid in it?

    Did you have lymph node
    Did you have lymph node removal? I also had this happen to me, where they removed 11 lymph nodes. It took about a year to get back to normal.
  • KayNYC
    KayNYC Member Posts: 495 Member
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    swelling area
    Call your surgeon;you may have an accumulation of fluid-a "seroma". I had a seroma under the armpit after my surgery. I had lumpectomy with sentinel node excision (6 nodes).It required draining several times (done by surgeon and NPs- it did not hurt when drained);it evenutually reobsorbed. It was a pesky and uncomfortable problem that lasted several weeks.
    Hope you get in touch with your doc and find out what is causing it.
    Hugs, K
  • cahjah75
    cahjah75 Member Posts: 2,631
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    what you're describing
    What you're describing does sound like what I mean. I had sentinel node plus 2 others removed on one side and 7 nodes on the other. That's where the pockets are. I was actually surprised the incision was soooooooo long on each side. It is definitely not squishy like there's fluid in them. Instead they feel like hard numb things. Since it's a holiday weekend I think I'll call my dr's office Tuesday morning and see what he says. Thanks for your input.
    Char
  • anitap1
    anitap1 Member Posts: 25
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    cahjah75 said:

    what you're describing
    What you're describing does sound like what I mean. I had sentinel node plus 2 others removed on one side and 7 nodes on the other. That's where the pockets are. I was actually surprised the incision was soooooooo long on each side. It is definitely not squishy like there's fluid in them. Instead they feel like hard numb things. Since it's a holiday weekend I think I'll call my dr's office Tuesday morning and see what he says. Thanks for your input.
    Char

    rolls under arms
    I have them, too. I had my drains out last Tuesday and now I have a large soft bulge under my right arm (lymph nodes removed) and a smaller one under the left above the drain hole. I also have a lump on the upper inside of the arm. It is a little sore. It has only been 3 1/2 weeks since the double mastectomy, so I am hoping it will go away. I go to the oncologist a week from today so I'll have him look at the areas.
  • cahjah75
    cahjah75 Member Posts: 2,631
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    anitap1 said:

    rolls under arms
    I have them, too. I had my drains out last Tuesday and now I have a large soft bulge under my right arm (lymph nodes removed) and a smaller one under the left above the drain hole. I also have a lump on the upper inside of the arm. It is a little sore. It has only been 3 1/2 weeks since the double mastectomy, so I am hoping it will go away. I go to the oncologist a week from today so I'll have him look at the areas.

    I called
    I called my surgeon's office yesterday and was told that I could come in and have them drained if I was concerned. Otherwise the nurse told me that eventually the fluids would be absorbed into my body. I was surprised at how long my incisions are. They literally go from almost the center of my chest to under my arm. Yikes!
    Char
  • KayNYC
    KayNYC Member Posts: 495 Member
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    cahjah75 said:

    I called
    I called my surgeon's office yesterday and was told that I could come in and have them drained if I was concerned. Otherwise the nurse told me that eventually the fluids would be absorbed into my body. I was surprised at how long my incisions are. They literally go from almost the center of my chest to under my arm. Yikes!
    Char

    glad to hear you made contact with the surgeon's office
    Did you decide to leave them alone or have them drained? Hope you are feeling better and less uncomfortable with the swellings.
    Hugs, K
  • Christine Louise
    Christine Louise Member Posts: 426 Member
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    cahjah75 said:

    I called
    I called my surgeon's office yesterday and was told that I could come in and have them drained if I was concerned. Otherwise the nurse told me that eventually the fluids would be absorbed into my body. I was surprised at how long my incisions are. They literally go from almost the center of my chest to under my arm. Yikes!
    Char

    Long scars -- was that really necessary?
    I'm sure it was, but I was shocked at how long my scars are, too! And, I nicely asked the surgeon to make them symmetrical, but she didn't. One's horizontal and the other's on an angle. SamuraiMom's photos of her nipple reconstruction show her vertical scars, which look much better than mine. Waah.

    I hope your puffy pits are getting better, Char!