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Date of last update: 10/21/2017.

Forum Name: Miscellaneous Cancer Topics

Question: Please help. Symptoms making me scared.

 tmternes - Wed Jan 17, 2007 4:08 am

I am a 37 year old male. I am a lifetime non-drinker & smoker. Up to the age of 34, I was considered very athletic, weightlifing & cardio 6 to 7 times per week as well as playing hockey. The last 3 years I have let it all slide from one excuse to the next. I went from being 6'1 203lbs & 10% BF. to currently sitting at 250lbs and god knows what my fat percentage is now, but I would guess 25 - 30%.

Around 4 months ago, I noticed discomfort in both of my armpits, but more in my right. At first, I thought nothing of it as I had changed armpit deodorant brands. I switched back and I thought things had got better but over the last month, I have really noticed them. They are not painful to the touch, but if I rub them, they definitely feel tender. However, if I press firmly on the area, I can get them to create a mild pain.

As well, around 1 month ago, I experienced a tightness in my chest. After reading sites on the web, I was panicking that I might be having a heart problem. Went in to the doctor where they took blood and did an EKG exam on me. Results were good. Doctor was convinced that I had Chest Wall Pain and no cardiac issues.

Still to this day, I notice tightness in the middle of my chest, but definitely not to the extent of the first night. The last week, I have felt a litlle lightheaded at times. My blood pressure was a little high at the time of diagnosis, but I thought low blood pressure could cause this.

And now because I am terrified that something is wrong, I find myself checking myself every spare moment. With this I have noticed certain parts on both sides of my chest near the nipple area to be slightly painful if I apply pressure. I also have this sensation on a certain position on both sides of my ribs. On top of that I noticed my right arm seems to feel numb at times, sometimes in the shoulder and then sometimes in the forearm area. Am I going nuts? I have never had any ailment of any serious nature before in my life. I am terrified that my last 3 years of laziness has created potential issues with my health.

I don't believe I have any lumps (although I thought I might have felt something in my right chest). As well, when I lift up my arms, I cannot tell if my lymph nodes are swollen, as they look normal to me and I don't know if this would be obvious or not. But they are very tender.

I don't know if I am becoming a hypochondriac or if something is going on here. As well, when I search the internet, it seems the only thing that I can find that causes armpit pain is due to some sort of infection or the "C" word. I am truly petrified at this moment.

Do you have any advice or something that could help ease my mind until my doctor's appointment.

As you are probablty aware, when one searches the internet for answers, symptoms can be the same for 20 different ailments. And to make matters worse, I can't find any stories that sound similar to mine.

Any help would be extremely grateful.


 Dr. Leigh Anderson - Sat Jan 20, 2007 8:00 am

User avatar Hi Trevor,

Your symptoms do not sound to alarming, especially if your Doctor confirmed a good EKG, And a normal Blood Panel screen. If your Blood panel screen showed no elevation or abnormal levels of your white/red cell count, you should not be too concerned that your symptoms are Cancer related.

The tightness in your chest and numbness you are experiencing could be symptoms created by anxiety attacks, if the EKG ruled out any Heart Problems.

Perhaps talking to your Primary physcian about medication to releive your anxiety associated to your health concerns, could improve your condition.

I am concerned that you relatively did a 360 on your exercise regime, you have to understand that you conditioned your body over a period of time to function at a higher cardiovascular level, and that your body learned to adapt to perform your physcial and mental performance on a continues regime, you cannot expect your body to just "Quit" what it has been conditioned to provide to you. With such a change in excercise your body can be subject to withdrawls causing physcial discomfort.

For as long as it took your body to achieve your desired physcial/cardiovascular conditon, it takes just as long to condition (wean) your body from requiring such demands.

Dr. Anderson

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