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Ask Dr. Norm S. Your Own Question
Dr. Norm S.
Dr. Norm S., Board Certified OB/GYN
Category: OB GYN
Satisfied Customers: 11298
Experience:  Over 30 years of experience in OB/GYN practice, including teaching students. Fellow of American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology.
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There I am a 43 year old female; just recently had blood

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Hi there
I am a 43 year old female; just recently had blood work done to test for Thyroid issues; which has come back clear; as has hormone levels, liver and kidney, anemia etc! Basically was told that all blood work results are normal.
However, I have a recurrent (although not hugely painful) problem in that my left breast is painful - with occasional bursts of pain in armpit and left shoulderblade (very rarely, right shoulder blade).......
Lying on my left side hurts my breast - and if I do, my left arm gets very numb.
Could this be perhaps nerve damage - or does it sound like cyclical pain?
Also, if anything more sinister - would blood counts have flagged up a problem?
Is your breast pain related to your menstrual cycle?Have you had a mammogram?Do you take any medications?Do you take in much caffeine? Thank you.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi thereI haven't had a mammogram. Pain may be a little more just before period. ..... Sort of feels tight and heavy in my breast... Slihhtly sore to touch
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I had asked if my recent blood work was likely to have shown anything up if there was anything sinister underlying? X
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I drink a couple of cups of tea a day, perhaps a couple of cokrs.
I don't think that the blood tests would be likely to show anything, whether the pain was sinister or not.
Breast pain is very common, whether it's on one side or both. It becomes more common during the 40's. That's probably due to a combination of hormonal changes and changes in the breasts themselves.
The large majority of such breast pain is not due to anything sinister. And it's usually not due to cancer.We often don't have very good treatment for breast pain. Decreasing stress and caffeine can be helpful.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Sorry, I meant would a blood test trigger suspicion of cancer if this were the case? Although I can't feel a lump and I am led to believe that pain wouldn't be a general indicator, is this right?
It's very rare that breast pain is due to nerve damage. Usually a well supporting bra can be quite helpful.
There are no good blood tests for breast cancer.You're correct that breast pain is rarely an indicator of breast cancer.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for putting my mind at rest. So from what I describe, you feel most likely cyclical? Are underwires bad for you?
Yes, I think your breast pain is cyclical.Underwires can be good or bad depending on whether they seem to ease or increase the breast pain. Having a comfortable bra that gives good support is usually important.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Ok, thank last question. If cyclical, how many days on average do women experience discomfort in a cycle. ...or can it be there to some degree, always off and on?
All women are different in how they may experience breast pain. Some will always have some pain, some will only experience it around period time, and everything in between.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Ok, so you think I'm normal then. That's good to hear, thank you!!
Yes, I think you're normal.Please click the rating stars. Thank you.
Dr. Norm S. and other OB GYN Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for saving my sanity!! Xx
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi, sorry......should have said last night!
The breast that I'm having the most trouble with (left) is bigger than the other (around an inch or so) - which has been the case for quite some time! Had a good feel around again this morning - can't find anything untoward (both breasts feel relatively similar)......could it perhaps be chest wall issues? Also, probably completely unrelated - but I also find myself having to clear my throat an awful lot lately.....especially when I drink tea or cola?!!
It's very common for the left breast to be larger than the right, for some reason.Most of the time, breast pain comes from the breast, although chest wall pain is possible.Perhaps you should see your doctor again to check it out, as well as to ask about the throat clearing. That is often due to acid reflux, but there are other causes, such as allergies, rhinitis.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Will see how it goes for the next couple of weeks once my period starts....and monitor from there! Thanks so much!
You're welcome.