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While doing physical therapy for bulging cervical discs, the therapist found a "knot in a muscle" above my shoulder blade in my back. When I stated "as long as thats all it is", she said "yes, that's all it is". How do you tell the difference between a knot in a muscle verses a tumor?

Category: Oncologist

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Category: Hematologist
 27 Doctors Online

Thank you for your query at
I have read your question with diligence.
There are some features in serious tumours or tumours which are known as malignant in comparison to Benign tumours.The malignant tumours are fixed to surrounding skin or subcutaneous tissue or muscles.These are generally not mobile.They grow at a faster rate .There are enlarged lymph nodes so draining area.Overlying skin may be red or shiny.The margins of swelling are irregular .
These features of malignant swelling are generally not found with benign swelling.
Hope this all will help you.
Feel free to discuss further,

Patient replied :

Hello again,
These are things that I already am aware of. If the "knot" in my muscle above my shoulder blade were a malignant tumor, would it be visible lump? There is no visible swelling. Just that the physical therapist feels a knot. If not for the physical therapist finding it, I would not have known anything was there. Do things like soft tissue cancers present themselves as a visible lump?

This all depend on size and site of tumor.If tumor is deep and small then it can not be visible.It is the rapid enlargement that makes it visible. If tumor size is small but the location is superficial it becomes visible as lump.
Hope that answers your question

Dr. Prasad Eswaran
Category: Hematologist
Doctorate in Medicine (Fellowship in Oncology), DM,  Madras Medical College & Govt. General Hospital, Chennai, India.

Doctor of Medicine (Residency in Radiation Oncology) , MD, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamilnadu, India, 2004-06.

Diploma in Medical Radiology & Therapy (Residency in Radiation Oncology), D.M.R.T, Madras Medical College & Govt. General Hospital, Chennai, India, 2004-06.

Bachelor of Medicine & Bachelor of Surgery - M.B.B.S, Govt. Stanley Medical College & Hospital, Chennai, India, 1998-2004.
Dr. Prasad Eswaran and 4 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you

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