Oncology (General Cancer)/white spots on xray

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Question
spine xray
spine xray  
I am a 34 year old healthy and active female. For the past year and a half, I've had a dull and sometimes sharp pain on the right side of my mid back when I take a deep breath. I've had 6 weeks of physical therapy and 3 weeks of a prescription muscle relaxer but it did not help. My doctor gave nd a steroid injection in my back muscles which helped for approximately 1 week.  He did an xray of my spine but I noticed small white spots in the lung/ribcage of my right side.  Should these white spots be concerning?

Answer
The white spots in the chest x-ray are either granulomas or more likely, end - on views of bronchi (air tubes) or blood vessels.  In either case, they shouldn't be concerning.  If your pain got better with a steroid injection and then it got worse after a week, I would think you have intercostal neuritis, which means that the nerve running under the rib is irritated, possibly by being pinched where it leaves the spinal cord.  While steroids can help, you might find a few days of taking ibuprofen regularly would be of help.  The idea is that you can suppress inflammation over a few days, and that would give the nerve time to heal.  If you can't handle ibuprofen, tylenol would work also.  Remember to take the ibuprofen 400 mg every six hours, or the tylenol, two every six hours.  Hope this helps.  

Oncology (General Cancer)

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Donald Higby, M.D.

Expertise

I can answer almost all questions related to the treatment and natural course of most kinds of cancer, especially cancers of prostate, colon, lung and breast.

Experience

I have been a practicing medical oncologist for 36 years, and have been chief of service at a major medical center for 25 years. I've also done research in cancer treatments.

Organizations
American Society of Clinical Oncology

Publications
New England Journal of Medicine American Journal of Medicine Journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology Hematology Transfusion Medicine

Education/Credentials
MD, Stanford University Internal Medicine residency, St. Louis University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO Medical Oncology Fellowship, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY

Awards and Honors
America's Best Physicians, last 14 years

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