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ask: Why would I have an enlarged lymph node in my breast?

By Anonymous
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I am a 30 y.o. female with no family history of breast cancer. I found a lump in my right breast a short while ago. Over the next few weeks I had 2 sets of mammograms and an ultrasound done. I called my gyn daily to get the results of the tests, and when they finally came in the FNP returned my call. She stated that it was benign, and when I questioned her further she said it was an enlarged lymph node. Not being a pushy person, and I didn't really have any questions prepared for this scenario I let it go and hung up. Now I can't find any info online for why I would have an enlarged lymph node in my breast. From what I'm finding it must not be a common place, because I have yet to find anything.

So, my question is...Is this something that should be further tested? It is still the same size as when I found it about a month and a half ago. The only other symptom I am having is that occasionally my breast will ache slightly. It's usually only for a few seconds and it quits. It occurs maybe 1-2 times a day.

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EmpowHER Guest

help!!! I have a similar problem. i have a lump in my lower right breast right by the armpit sorta, it is very painful and makes my arm hurt, i went for an ultrasound and was told it was a swollen lymph node. I didn't really know what to ask so i left. i had no further results or calls from the doctors but it does not feel like its getting better, it goes from dime to quarter size daily and makes my back extremely stiff and is extremely painful... any advice?

May 2, 2014 - 2:26pm
Maryann Gromisch RN Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hello Anonymous,

How long have you had this swollen and painful lymph node?

Lymph nodes are small,bean-shaped glands that are located throughout the body. Their role in the lymph system is to carry lymph fluid, nutrients, and waste material between the body tissues and the bloodstream. The lymph system plays an important role in the immune system.

Swelling of a lymph node is the result of injury, infection, or a tumor which develops in or near that lymph node.

Generally. a swollen axillary lymph node, which are the glands located in the armpit,results from an injury or infection to the arm or hand. A rare cause may be breast cancer or lymphoma, which is a type of cancer that affects the lymph system. There are two main types of lymphoma, Hodgkin's lymphoma and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma

Anonymous, please give your doctor a call and ask to have an appointment to discuss the findings of the ultrasound. You deserve an answer as to the cause. Also, share that this lymph node increases in size and is causing you extreme pain.

Please keep us updated.

May 2, 2014 - 5:05pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Maryann Gromisch RN)

they gave me the results there and told me basically they cannot do anything about it.. I don't think they take me seriously because im so young.

May 16, 2014 - 7:25pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Maryann Gromisch RN)

thank you so much. im very worried. the doctors around my town aren't too professional. im looking into it.

May 2, 2014 - 5:38pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

im only 17 );

May 2, 2014 - 2:36pm
EmpowHER Guest

I am glad I found this page! I just turned 27 and have had pain and a small lump in my right breast since december. This happened around the same time that I developed a uti so I thought it may be an infection. My gyno found no lump but I went to my other doctor who was stumped because my breast looked normal and she felt no lump. Finally I got an ultrasound this past Friday and results today..it is apparently a small lymph node. The pain is gone for now buy I don't know if I should seek additional opinions. I don't have health insurance so I am concerned about doing too many tests.

March 18, 2014 - 10:51am
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

I'm sorry you are in such a predicament - not having health insurance is an awful problem in this country. 

What comments came along with the results of the ultrasound? There should be a plan of action (or not) in the report. Did you see this or has your doctor mentioned any kind of plan?


March 18, 2014 - 11:41am
EmpowHER Guest

I'm 48 and have like you do an enlarged lymph node in my breast. I have a niece with breast cancer at age 30. I'm due to have a fine needle biopsy tomorrow morning. My advice for you is if you are that concerned and for peace of mind, get a biopsy done asap. You will feel much better knowing that you have an answer.

December 29, 2013 - 10:00pm
EmpowHER Guest

A few quick things, in regards to the lymph node enlargement, your physician will look for several things such as size, is it tender or non tender, is it mobile or fixed. The paramamillary lymph nodes which drain the breast can become enlarged from an infection within the breast, cancer, or even something as simple as node congestion. I second others' opinions though. Lymph nodes that don't return to size after a few weeks warrant ultrasound and/or biopsy.

October 18, 2013 - 8:21pm

Has anyone getten any results on this topic? I am not sure how old this forum is or how often it is checked. I recently found 3 lumps in the outer quadrant of my left breast. The ultrasound could only pick up one of the lumps which was diagnosed as a lipoma. I was relieved. The radiologist felt that the other lumps were just fibronodular breast tissue and not of much concern and that is why they were not picked up by the ultrasound. And the mammo showed no malignant abnormalities. However, I was told and it was also printed on the ultrasound report that I have "extremely dense" breasts, so I know that a mammo is not the most diagnostic in cases like mine. I am also only 28 years old. They still had me see a BS just to be safe and the breast surgeon felt all the lumps and said these are nothing, just normal fibronodular breast tissue. Mind you, I can feel the boarders of the original lumps that were not seen on the ultrasound. Now, I week later, I have also found 2 more lumps near my armpit. I am so upset. I can only think that they are lymph nodes and they are swollen because of the "normal fibronodular tissue" that may not be normal. The doctor has completely brushed me off. I am so confused and upset. I had two ultrasounds performed 10 days apart, both not picking up on the other easily palpated masses, but both of these ultrasounds were performed prior to me finding these new masses near my underarm, which I can only imagine are lymph nodes because of how they feel, are tender, and where they are located. I feel like I have not been taken seriously once through this entire process and I am so scared. Has anyone who commented on this forum for lymph nodes received any answers yet? I am scared. Thank you for your time, ladies.

October 17, 2013 - 12:54pm
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