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Breast lump/thickening - am I being stupid?

12 Nov 2018 20:32

I can't really believe i'm posting here again (I went through screening for lymphoma earlier this year) but I noticed a lumpy or thicker area in my breast in September, and have been ignoring it until now mainly because I wasn't sure exactly what I was feeling and because of all the tests i've already had. It may be slightly bigger than when I first felt it but I'm not really sure. It is nearish the nipple, between 1oclock and 3oclock of my breast. I can't work out exactly what shape it is, it doesn't feel like an obvious smooth round grapelike thing but like a thicker area of lumpy tissue. I don't think it is moveable but its not rock hard like concrete either - its more firm but rubbery. It also feels more obvious in some positions than others. I have small breasts which makes it even more confusing because I can feel my ribs if I press too hard. Its completely painless, even with deep palpatation.

I feel silly going to the GP if it is just normal tissue, because I even had a PET scan in July so wouldn't this have shown up if it was anything? All my pet scan showed was mild uptake in right sided neck lymph nodes and "brown fat" uptake in chest, armpits, etc. The dr who examined me in July must have thought some of the tissue near my breast in my armpit felt a little off but not significantly because she said "hmmm" then paused and said "actually that could be normal tissue" but she didn't feel my actual breast... I felt my breast afterwards and didn't notice anything at the time.

'm also only 22 so I know the odds of it being cancer are extremely low and am therefore not really all that worried, but I have had a fair bit of radiation this year (2 ct scans, chest xray, pet). I just don't want to go to my gp and seem like the biggest hypochondriac ever because I already had loads of screening for my lymph nodes, and I'm also reluctant to even go for more screening at all because it was such a horrible time waiting to find out.

Breast lump/thickening - am I being stupid?

13 Nov 2018 00:47 in response to SunshineEm

Hi sunshine

if I were you I would go and see my GP, if nothing else it would ease my worries. The GP will decide if a referral is necessary. Tests can be horrible but I would go through them if it gave me peace of mind.

at your age your breasts can be lumpy but only a physical examination by your GP will tell you if yours is cause for concern. 

Take care

Breast lump/thickening - am I being stupid?

13 Nov 2018 16:11 in response to Magpiemaggie

Hi Magpiemaggie,

Thanks for your reply, I did see the GP this morning. She could feel what I described but said she thinks it is most likely lumpy breast tissue, but did say to come back for her to check it again in a month to see if its changed. So that is reassuring! 

She was a really lovely doctor, the only thing which is naggling me a little is she only examined me with my arms relaxed by my side and I can feel it most prominently/it feels harder with my hand behind my head, like the position they tell you to do in self-examinations... i’m not sure if that makes a difference? Does anyone know? Obviously she knows what shes doing. Maybe i should just mention that next time I see her! 

Overall, i’m glad I went in the end so thank you!! 

Breast lump/thickening - am I being stupid?

13 Nov 2018 16:59 in response to SunshineEm

That’s great news! your GP will know the difference between a fatty lump (innocent) and a hard solid lump (suspicious). By all means the next time you see her put your hands behind your head and tell her you prefer to be examined that way. However I think you know deep down that you’re GP knows what she’s doing.

Take care x