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Worried About Lymph Node

Moimoi12
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2020

Hello,

I am 26 years old soon to be 27. About 2 years ago I noticed a small inflamed lump under my arm just below my armpit (a couple of inches below where the hair is), superficial and not able to be seen above the skin. I decided to let it be and not do anything about it, it never grew and only seems to irritate me from time to time. During this COVID-19 pandemic I became a little more health conscious and decided I should mention it to my doctor. The doctor that saw me felt it, asked me some questions but said that it could be either a cyst, lipoma, or a nodule, she recommended I have it scanned with an ultrasound test and some blood work done. Blood work returned normal, my White Blood Cell Differential came back reporting 3.62 x1000/mcL for Lymphocytes in which the range from my age is 1.00 - 3.60 x1000/mcL and the rest of the tests were normal. I consulted the doctor about the .02 level higher than the normal and he mentioned that it was negligible. I just had the ultrasound today, I tried my best not to speak to the technician as I understand that they are not the doctor, but the technician looked at me after they finished and said, "Good catch! How did you notice that?" My stomach dropped... it turned out to be an enlarged lymph node... I mentioned to her that I have had it for quite sometime now and it just seems to be there. I explained to the technician about how I mainly notice it while sitting at the desk at work while having my arm down for a prolonged period of time. The technician then mentioned that it didn't look abnormal (stomach feeling goes away) and that I shouldn't have anything to worry about, but that to wait for the doctor to review the report. She was empathetic with me and explained how whenever we feel lymph nodes enlarged we automatically think cancer, but that it didn't look like so in the ultrasound. It was quite reassuring to hear the technician say that nothing looked abnormal as I have been EXTREMELY ANXIOUS about the entire process. I don't have any other symptoms, no: fevers, chills, night sweats, fatigue, shortness of breath, or other enlarged lymph nodes. I am posting here to continue receiving reassurance as I've consulted Dr. Google about it again and he mentioned the plethora of misdiagnosis that result from an ultrasound. Please let me know if you have had something similar or if you have an opinion about what I am experiencing. I will mention that in September of 2018 I had a cholecystectomy to remove my gallbladder as I was experiencing a lot of discomfort from eating, digesting, and defecating. For some odd reason I feel that the lymph node has something to do with that procedure or those symptoms, but I don't have a way to confirm that.

Max Former Hodgkins Stage 3's picture
Max Former Hodg...
Posts: 3452
Joined: May 2012

Moimoi,

A technician is in no way qualified to comment on how a lymph node "looks."  In fact, an oncologist would not venture many guesses based upon how a node "looks" (well, except that size can be indicative in some cases).

Blood work returning normal is of course better than having it come back seriously out of wack, but normal blood panels prove little to nothing regarding lymphoma also.  Speak with your doctor after he or she gets the report from the radiologist reading the images, and go from there.

But so far, you have very little to suggest that this node is cancerous.  Do due diligence and move on in trust and comfort.

Moimoi12
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2020

Max, 

 

Thank you for responding to my question about my lymph node. I guess I am still a little nervous to hear what the doctor will say. It has been there for quite some time and has never gotten bigger. 

ShadyGuy's picture
ShadyGuy
Posts: 517
Joined: Jan 2017

You mentioned it was inflamed. Is it constantly inflamed or on again off again inflamed? Would you describe it as being painful or just annoying? It sounds a lot like a non cancerous cyst I had removed in 2011. Good luck.

Moimoi12
Posts: 3
Joined: Jun 2020

ShadyGuy,

 

It feels constantly inflamed. I dont know the size but its significantly smaller than my index finger, if that make any sense. Like a small grape? It doesn't hurt per say, but I can feel it from time to time through the days. The feeling when I can feel it, is like a pinch. If i press down on it, I can feel some pressure and the pinch feeling I get. The person who conducted the ultrasound mentioned that it was indeed a lymph node, in your experience does a lymph node get confused with a cyst often? 

ShadyGuy's picture
ShadyGuy
Posts: 517
Joined: Jan 2017

but lymphoma nodes are not generally painful and usually not inflamed. Good luck.

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