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What causes neurofibromas and lipomas ?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2005
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I am a (near) seven year breast cancer survivor. Since, I've had many horomonal changes (chemo induced menopause with intermittent "normal" bleeeding on rare occasions), tiny nodules/lieyomas in my uterus, lungs, iliac artery, thyroid - those that I know of. I feel many around my ribs under the right side of breast cancer area but they have assured they are benign according to scans/doctors. I hurt, am tired, don't feel well - sore throats, swollen glands, etc., back and right side pain. Atrophy/scar on kidney (right), fatty liver, thyroid is low and degenerative/compression in spine but otherwise they say healthy. Weight is 204 but losing, stopped smoking a year ago. No conclusive diagnoses, but cancer was on right side. The largest nodule is the iliac which is only 7 x 10 mm. The lung nodules appear to be growing about 2-3 mm in six months or so. Nobody is alarmed. Had one supposed "misdisagnosis" of neurofibromatosis but two doctors say no. I'm confused. Feel horrible physically. Can you give me a direction. Begning metasticizing leiyoma???? A guess...anything? They tell me don't worry but I feel terrible, most of the pain on the same side. Oh, now I have an ulcer they think. What in the world is going on?
Posted Mon, 30 Apr 2012 in Breast Cancer
Answered by Dr. Prasad 12 hours later
Dear Darla,

Thanks for your query.

From what you have mentioned the problems that you have are

1. Breast cancer that is treated.
2. Tiny nodules in the uterus, lungs (which appears to be growing) iliac artery, thyroid, around the right side of the ribs, lymphnode enlargement.
3. On and off sore throat, swollen glands (though it is not clear which gland you are referring to), back pain
4. Fatty liver
5. Hypothyroidism

If the nodules have been proved to be present on CT / MRI scans - these nodules are likely to be related to each other.

When things are not clear, clinician often rely on getting a tissue sample studied under microscope. This most often gives the conclusive evidence as to what the diagnosis is. Hence I guess, this is what you may need.

A simple excision of the largest lymphnode (iliac lymphnode) and biopsy can be done. The histo pathological examination will suggest to as what the underlying cause is; if it is a benign or a malignant one.

Alternatively, one could get bronchoscopic / CT guided biopsy of the lung lesion.

A clear diagnosis is possible through the biopsy and Histo pathological examination.

Hope I have answered your query adequately. I will be available to answer follow up query.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: What causes neurofibromas and lipomas ? 2 days later
This is my feeling, that they are related but they keep telling me no worries! All have been confirmed on MRI and CTs. Your answer is helpful. Just curious if there are systematic types of diseases other than metastatic cancer that could cause similar problems with all these nodules. Such as the neurofimbromas or others that I may have them consider/look at if they prove to be negative for cancer on the lung and iliac artery. i.e, are there benign pathologies that spread this way I can look into? Thank you.
Answered by Dr. Prasad 15 hours later

When I said, they are likely to be interlinked, I meant the nodules. The other problems that you report are independent problems unlikely to be related to these nodules.

Now to as what it could be??

As I was reading your first post, my first thought was it could be a lymphnode enlargement probably secondary to inflammatory condition. Neurofibromas, offcourse was a possibility. Then again lipomas too are possible. It would have been useful if you had posted the reports of the CT/MRI scan reports here. Else you could send me the scanned report at YYYY@YYYY with subject as Attention of Dr. Prasad. Also let me know that you have sent the mail by posting your message on the follow up.

As you describe that most of the nodules are hardly growing, the chance of metastatic condition is remote.

I wish I could be more definitive in my answer, but without biopsy and pathology reports a proof is inevident . You may discuss with your primary care provider and if feasible then go ahead with the biopsy.

Hope I have provided you with useful informations. I'l be glad to answer any other queries.

Wish you good health.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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