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Small lump on neck , wants to know if cancerous. CBC normal. - Online Doctor Chats

Date : 21-Feb-2012
User rating for this question
Very Good Posted in: Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by

General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
Answered : 619 Questions
User :   Hi my 11 year old son has a small nickel sized lump on the right side of his neck below his ear.. not sure how long it's been there. I seem to remember that it was there a while back, but am not totally sure. It does not hurt when we touch it. It is squishy when you touch it. I have been told it's a swollen lymph node, but i am worried it could be cancerous.. given the fact that he's 11 what are the chances it's something serious? Also, he recently had a complete CBC blood test and everything was normal.. should we get a biopsy done? Is this surgery for the biopsy or just a needle? thanks..
Doctor :   hi
Doctor :   Dr. XXXXXXXX here. Let me read what you have typed
User :   ok thanks
Doctor :   if the CBC came back normal including th eperipheral smear
Doctor :   then the chances of it being cancerous is less
User :   what is an eperipheral smear?
User :   not sure he had that done or not
Doctor :   if still in doubt a FNAC (fine needle aspiration biopsy) can be done to see if at all it is cancerous
Doctor :   peripheral smear is the test done on the smear of the blood under microscope to study the cell types
Doctor :   and if any abnormal cells are found, the further investigations are carried out
User :   ok i see
User :   so is the FNAC something they would need to sedate him for ?
Doctor :   what symptoms does he have?
Doctor :   does he eat well, has he lost weight?
Doctor :   does he fall sick often?
User :   no
User :   he is not sick often
User :   and he eats ok.. he is thin like i was when i was his age
User :   he is a picky eater but eats well if it's something he likes like pizza etc
User :   so there are no symptoms that we can tell.. it does not hurt he says when he touches it.
Doctor :   ok
User :   he thought it was pieces of cartilage but i dont think so
Doctor :   then you can relax, just discuss the possibility of doing the peripheral s,ear for blood
Doctor :   and the FNAC for him if the peripheral smear comes abnormal
Doctor :   *smear
User :   i thought they did the peripheral smear when they did the CBC count
User :   ?
User :   so is the FNAC something they would need to sedate him for ?
Doctor :   no not really, local anesthesia should be enough
User :   ok
Doctor :   just check in the report if it is done
Doctor :   and type the report if you have the copy of it
Doctor :   i will help you to interpret it
User :   i do not have it unfortunately
User :   so they did the CBC count because he had complained that he was tired some.. but the test was normal.
User :   if it was cancerous wouldnt some of the levels in the CBC test be off a little?
User :   he also has ADD
User :   still there?
User :   hello ?
Doctor :   yes.
User :   XXXXXXXX Rowley: so they did the CBC count because he had complained that he was tired some.. but the test was normal. XXXXXXXX Rowley: if it was cancerous wouldnt some of the levels in the CBC test be off a little?
User :   can u respond please?
User :   i have 2 min left..
User :   so the chances of it being cancerous based on what i told you are very low, correct?
User :   hello ??
User :   please respond.. 40 sec left
User :   hello
User :   email m
User :   YYYY@YYYY
User :   com
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