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Dr. Rick, MD
Dr. Rick, MD, Board Certified MD
Category: Medical
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Experience:  20+ years as a doctor. Internal Medicine Internship in NYC
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i have a large lump under my rib cage on my left side of my

Resolved Question:

i have a large lump under my rib cage on my left side of my back. i just noticed it recently. what could it be?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. Rick, MD replied 2 years ago.

RickMD :

I am online and happy to help you with your question today.

RickMD :

Is it painful? Is the skin an abnormal color etc over the lump? Is it soft, hard, mobile etc.

RickMD :

Is it actual underneath the rib bone or it under the skin, over the rib where you can feel it?

Customer:

it is not painful...uncomfortable and no color change in skin...feels hard to me but due to the location,its hard to really tell if its mobile.under the rib bone in my back

Customer:

it does give some dis comfort when lying on it though

Customer:

left waist

RickMD :

Ok. So, it is not something that you or a partner could feel since it is under (on the lung side) of your ribs, is that correct?

Customer:

we can feel it yes... it is the size of a golf ball i would say

Customer:

if you were to press underneath my rib cage on my back left side you can feel it very well

RickMD :

Ok. Got it.

RickMD :

Hmm....I don't think I understand where it is yet. Is this lump something that you do not have to reach up under a rib to feel, such as it is under the skin and you could see this lump with your eyes and touch it with you fingers?

RickMD :

This is harder using chat then face to face in the office :)

Customer:

it is located right at the bottom rib on my left back..

Customer:

lumbar area i guess

Customer:

i dont have medical insurance so this is why i am here in this chat.

RickMD :

I understand but from your description it is hard to get a picture in my mind of where this bump is.

RickMD :

A bump under the ribs would be impossible to touch or see. Are you saying that you feel like something is under your ribs in this area when you lay down, breathe etc.

RickMD :

But, can your partner actually see a bump with their eyes and grab this golfball bump with their finger without digging under your ribs?

Customer:

ok...if you were looking at my back...and put your hands at the bottom rib on my left side...lumbar area and put your fingers under my lowest rib...close to my hip it is under that rib

Customer:

yes he can feel it..not see it as it is under the rib.

RickMD :

Ok. Got it. What symptoms did you have that made you discover this bump?

Customer:

about two weeks ago it became noticeable to me when i laid on my left side...it does not cause me pain but it is def uncomfortable. and i asked my husband to feel it and he was like OMG what is that? there is not one on the other side and i am very worried about cancer or something

Customer:

it is large enough to feel easily

Customer:

it aches but no severe pain as of yet

RickMD :

Well, I share your concern. There is no normal anatomical reason for a lump to be present in this area. A painless lump under a rib is something that needs to be evaluated sooner rather than later.


 


I realize that you do not have health insurance right now. That being said, delay in workup for this rather large mass is unwise.

Customer:

ok...so what could it possibly be...i new that much...

RickMD :

Could it be cancer? Yes. Could it be a cyst that is not dangerous? Yes. Should you wait to see a doctor until you get insurance? Absolutely not.

RickMD :

It might be a growth on the rib itself, it could be from lymphoma, a metastatic cancer, an encysted infection.......lot of things.

RickMD :

As you have already seen, with chat as my only diagnostic "tool" it is hard to even figure out where it is, let alone evaluated how it feels, moves, looks, exactly where it is etc. If I could do this I would be able to reasonably narrow down the possibilities for you.

Customer:

ok...yes those are all things i read on the internet.....i guess i was hoping for a more definitive answer here....yes please narrow it down if you could'

RickMD :

But at this point I would think the very worst -- cancer -- and hope for the best -- lipoma or cyst.

RickMD :

My first thought is cancer.....but I didn't want to say that.

RickMD :

I hope you understand the limitations I am under here on the internet :(

Customer:

yes and thank you

RickMD :

I wish you the very best.

RickMD :

I hope this information was helpful for you. But I do work for tips so I want to make sure you are happy with me before rating me. If you have another question on this or a related issue feel free to fire away. And please let me know if the rating system gives you any troubles.

Thanks in advance,

Dr. Rick

Customer:

thank you

RickMD :

My pleasure.

Dr. Rick, MD, Board Certified MD
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 8345
Experience: 20+ years as a doctor. Internal Medicine Internship in NYC
Dr. Rick, MD and 6 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. Rick, MD replied 2 years ago.
Our chat has ended, but you can still continue to ask me questions here until you are satisfied with your answer. Come back to this page to view our conversation and any other new information.

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If you haven’t already done so, please rate your answer above. Or, you can reply to me using the box below.
Expert:  Dr. Rick, MD replied 2 years ago.
Hi,

I was just thinking about you today and wondering what the doctor thought. Was there anything abnormal on your blood tests? Did they do an MRI or ct scan? What do they think?

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