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What do my X-ray test results indicate?

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Posted on Wed, 11 May 2016
Question: went to a PA with severe upper back pain...pain came on a couple of days ago. Pain is sometimes in the middle of my back between shoulder blades, sometimes moves to left or right. Thought it was walking pnemonia, had x-rays done, PA says there is a small spot, called it something I can't pronounce and she really couldn't explain it to me that well. Maybe something to do with calcium or cancer. Says spot is small and shouldn't cause the back pain. taking an antibiotic and cough syrup and she's calling in a steriod for inflammation and pain. Used to be smoker. What can she be talking about?
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Answered by Dr. Luchuo Engelbert Bain (2 hours later)
Brief Answer:
Calcifications , please monitor symptoms and do a control X-ray

Detailed Answer:
Hi and thanks for the query,

The commonest spots seen on Chest X rays could be called Calcifications. This not necessarily mean they contain calcium nor that they are cancers. This is just a condensation (small mass) that appears on a X ray as a white dot (calcification). These could be seen even in healthy individuals, persons who worked in dust inhaling industries (that could lead to Silicoses) as well as some chronic infections and cancer.

I think its too early to worry as what matters most is the presence of symptoms and evolution of such calcifications. It might be important to closely monitor your response to treatment and do control X-rays to see how it evolves. You might have to notify your doctor in case you develop new symptoms or any aggravation in your general health status.

Thanks and kind regards as I wish you the best of health.

Dr Bain
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
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Follow up: Dr. Luchuo Engelbert Bain (11 minutes later)
Would a small calcification cause severe back pain in the upper back between shoulder blades? I had this kind of pain in the past and then walking pneumonia was my diagnosis, but they said the xrays don't show that.
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Answered by Dr. Luchuo Engelbert Bain (9 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Should not be the cause of pain generally.

Detailed Answer:
Hi and thanks for the query,

I am afraid small calcifications should NOT cause such pain. It is usual to experience pain with pneumonia. Doing follow up X rays might be useful. It might be important to also note that some images could appear as calcifications which really do not exist in reality. thee are called X ray artefacts. It is important to ensure the quality of the X rays too.

Thanks and kind regards as I wish you the best of health.

Dr Bain
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Arnab Banerjee
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Answered by
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Dr. Luchuo Engelbert Bain

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2009

Answered : 3092 Questions

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What do my X-ray test results indicate?

Brief Answer: Calcifications , please monitor symptoms and do a control X-ray Detailed Answer: Hi and thanks for the query, The commonest spots seen on Chest X rays could be called Calcifications. This not necessarily mean they contain calcium nor that they are cancers. This is just a condensation (small mass) that appears on a X ray as a white dot (calcification). These could be seen even in healthy individuals, persons who worked in dust inhaling industries (that could lead to Silicoses) as well as some chronic infections and cancer. I think its too early to worry as what matters most is the presence of symptoms and evolution of such calcifications. It might be important to closely monitor your response to treatment and do control X-rays to see how it evolves. You might have to notify your doctor in case you develop new symptoms or any aggravation in your general health status. Thanks and kind regards as I wish you the best of health. Dr Bain