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The Roy Castle Lung Cancer Foundation
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Had rigid bronchoscopy and left VATS lower lobectomy on 9/1/19 why does my chest and breast area feel numb?Taking paracetamol 4 times a day and slow release oxycodone hydrochloride 2 times a day.

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I wouldnt worry too much , I am no expert but when I had a pneumonectomy I felt numb

in my breast and chest area , it took about 2 months before it settled.

I think its to do with the operations , and nerves and muscles.

If your unsure have a word with your lung cancer specialist nurse or contact the R.C.L.F.

on the above About section. or phone them.

Take care. xx:)

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Thank you

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It is likely that the chest wall was infiltrated with local anesthetic at the time of your surgery.This can cause a feeling of numbness. Hopefully this will settle in time.

Kind regards.

All the team at the Roy Castle Helpline.

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Thank you

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Hi there and welcome to the club no one wants to join. I had my left lung removed on 4th July 2018. I also woke to discover numbness throughout my chest and ribs area. Over the months this has reduced to the area where the lung used to be. This numbness and tightness increases with exertion. Now accepting that I am not a doctor, my understanding is this is due to unavoidable nerve damage caused whilst entertaining sawbones.

I wish you steady progress with your recovery.

Col

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Thanks feel better now knowing this is normal

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What you are experiencing is perfectly normal. I'm nearly 4 years from my lobectomy and still have a band of numbness around from the surgical scar to under my breast. In order to do this surgery, many nerves are cut and need to heal. It may take months for this to resolve, but it does lessen over time. A drug called gabapentin can help with nerve pain. You might want to discuss this with your medical team.

Take care and I wish you a speedy recovery.

Jean

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Hi,you wrote the reply that I was thinking,I am 8 months post lobectomy and I too have the nerve pain,which has got less and less,I have stopped talking the gabapentin,if the pain returns I will ask for it again,so many drugs especially during the operation,but all necessary.I am now cancer free,thanks to the skill and dedication of my team at hospital.xx

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Thank you

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My lobectomy was in Dec 2010 (upper left lobe - open surgery - not keyhole) and I had no idea how long pain/numbness might last. If you think how long it can take for a tooth/mouth to settle down after a dentist has poked about, it makes sense that cutting us open, working through nerves, muscle, tissue and bone will have an impact as the neutrons/nerves try and heal/reconnect. Occasionally I get winded on the side and around the ribs where surgery was especially if I have a chest infection at the time but otherwise, it does heal. Keeping active and moving about is the best thing you can do for your health and lung rehabilitation. good luck. There is a useful resource on the Roy Castle website under 'how we help', 'information', 'treatments', 'my lung surgery' explaining milestones and what's normal or not so you can ask your medical staff any questions that concern you. it takes time - be patient but thankful - not many of us are fortunate enough to get surgery.

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Thank you

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