Questions about cancer pain / symptoms

Mon, 08/24/2020 - 13:42

Having a few questions about initial signs of lung cancer due to recent symptoms of sore throat, chest discomfort, and shoulder / shoulder blade / chest pain. I hope this post is not too long.

I have been to see my GP doctor about these, and he believes that they are separate, and not related.

First, the sore throat started about 3-4 months ago as throat tightness and hoarseness that lasted for a couple of days. The tightness and hoarseness calmed, but the sore throat did not go away. Since then, it has felt like anything from sore and itchy to burning down into my chest. Most of the discomfort has been on the same side (right) as my shoulder pain, but there were a few days that it was mostly on the left. Currently, it is mostly sore, achy, and a little itchy. I am also having discomfort on the right center of my chest near the breast bone. This pain is distracting at times, but mostly it is achy and sore as well. I am not sure if it is associated with the sore throat or with the shoulder pain. Today, it has moved to directly top center of my chest.

I do have allergies and sinus problems with constant drainage into my throat and swallowing, but this is nothing new, and I have not had a long term sore throat with it. I also thought that this may be related to the humidity level in the office because most people are working from home now, but I have checked today, and that seems normal. My throat and chest irritation do seem worse at the office. Maybe it is from new cleaning efforts for the corona virus? I am pretty sensitive, but have not noticed any unusual odors.

The shoulder pain also started about 3 months ago with sharp pain that moved from the back of my arm pit to my shoulder blade to my upper arm to the front of the arm shoulder joint to spreading across the upper right chest. The pain moved quite frequently around these points for a couple of months. The pain now seems more sore and achy, and not moving so frequently.

My GP sees the shoulder pain as musculoskeletal, and the sore throat as acid reflux. Since reading the info on this website, I tend to agree with shoulder pain. I did read plenty about Pancoast tumors, but the symptoms don’t seem to fit the detailed info here. Unfortunately, my GP did not look at my throat due to covid 19 protocols.

So am I concerned about the continuing sore throat and chest discomfort. Background: I am a male in my mid 50s who has never smoked but has been exposed to second hand smoke as a child. One side of my family were mostly smokers, and they all died from lung cancer at some point. As far as other symptoms, I have had no coughing, loss of appetite, weight loss, shortness of breath, unusual fatigue, wheezing, bone pain, headaches, etc. I will also note that I did have covid 19 symptoms (with exposure to a person who tested positive) about 2 months ago. However, I did not have any coughing then, and I managed to basically recover in two weeks with little issue except for minor fatigue which is gone now.

I am hoping for some insight based on the info above. Is there any real concern here, and what should I ask my doctor to do next? I will be seeing him for blood work in a couple of weeks. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

JanineT Forum …

Hi Scot,


I'm sorry you're having these symptoms.  Unfortunately, we are not able to suggest why you might be having them.  I'd tell my doc everything you've said here and what your concerns are about possible diagnoses.  Since you believe you had COVID 19 ask about possible delayed symptoms, covid 19 continues to show how varied it's symptoms and after-effects can be. 


I hope your find a resolution to your problems. 

All the best,