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What causes swollen axillary lymph node with a red streak?

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Posted on Mon, 28 Jul 2014
Question: Hi. A week ago, my right axillary lymph node swelled with a red streak. A doctor friend recommend that I see her or her superior and hematologist. The lump with hard with edema and unilateral. A few days later, I noticed a second painless lump in the second axillary lymph node. I sent my doctor a text, and they asked me to come in for an exam. By then, there was no edema, and both lymph nodes had hard fixed lumps. My doctor said that if the lumps became painful or enlarged in the week, I should send a text and come in for a sonogram. They seem to be staying the same. However, this evening while taking a shower, I noticed a third hard lump ( a little bigger) in between the skin on my thigh and the skin of my scrotum. It too is hard and painless. I have a little pain radiating down the inside of my thigh, but it isn't severe. I don't have a fever, but been having pain in my lower back and my lower abdomen (right flank). I also have had a cough for quite awhile (which was confirmed with a chest x-ray -- bronchial inflammation due to chronic cough). When they did the blood work up, liver and kidney functions appeared normal. WBC was abnormal but not too abnormal. No infection detected.

My question is, should I text my doctor about this new lump, or should I wait and watch with the other two. (She recommended a sonogram on the lymph nodes if a change in size / pain occurred or if they were still there after two weeks). My doctor is really busy and I don't was to needlessly bother her.

What is your opinion. Am I worrying too much?
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Answered by Dr. M Y Shareef (2 hours later)
Brief Answer:
A cytological/histological diagnosis is required.

Detailed Answer:
Hi XXXX Good evening. I am Dr Shareef answering your query.

I feel that your worrying is justified. If I were your doctor, with the history of hard and fixed lymph node swellings without much pain and inflammatory features, after a routine blood test like CBC, PS, and an ESR, I would advise you for a FNAC(fine needle aspiration cytology) for a cytological diagnosis, and an excision biopsy for a histological diagnosis for confirmation if need be. I would also add an ultrasound of abdomen to rule out similar pathology inside, and any organomegaly. Further management would depend on the conclusive diagnosis with the help of a physical examination and related investigation reports.

I hope this information would help you in discussing with your family physician/treating doctor in further management of your problem. Please do not hesitate to ask in case of any further doubts.

Thanks for choosing health care magic to clear doubts on your health problems. Wishing you an early recovery. Dr Shareef.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. M Y Shareef

General Surgeon

Practicing since :1979

Answered : 2457 Questions

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What causes swollen axillary lymph node with a red streak?

Brief Answer: A cytological/histological diagnosis is required. Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX Good evening. I am Dr Shareef answering your query. I feel that your worrying is justified. If I were your doctor, with the history of hard and fixed lymph node swellings without much pain and inflammatory features, after a routine blood test like CBC, PS, and an ESR, I would advise you for a FNAC(fine needle aspiration cytology) for a cytological diagnosis, and an excision biopsy for a histological diagnosis for confirmation if need be. I would also add an ultrasound of abdomen to rule out similar pathology inside, and any organomegaly. Further management would depend on the conclusive diagnosis with the help of a physical examination and related investigation reports. I hope this information would help you in discussing with your family physician/treating doctor in further management of your problem. Please do not hesitate to ask in case of any further doubts. Thanks for choosing health care magic to clear doubts on your health problems. Wishing you an early recovery. Dr Shareef.