Tumor Probs

I have this tumor on the lower half of the right side of my rib cage. It’s an exosotosis due to my Multiple Exostoses/MHE/multiple osteochondromas and probably benign, but the annoying thing is it gets caught on my ribs ALL THE TIME. Or my ribs get caught on it…either way it’s bloody uncomfortable and when it happens, I can’t breathe. I have to stretch slowly and try to pop my rib back in place and sometimes it takes time and it’s always agony.

This used to only occur when I bent over to put on socks, but it’s happening more frequently now. I’ll feel my ribs rub against it when I breathe, or when I’m sitting a certain way. If I stretch or twist my body, if I lift my arms up ‘the wrong way’ to wash my hair, or if I’m just sitting too long at my desk.


And yes, it affects me that way too. Nothing like stopping your nooky mid-way because your tumor has trapped your rib like a boat on the rocks.

It’s annoying.

It’s another thing I’ve had to add to my “must adjust/adapt” to list.

I tried to get an appointment with my specialist months ago for an entirely different reason (that would be my ankle), but I haven’t heard back from them yet. I know I’m not a priority because my disorder is not life threatening, but God damn, it’s annoying and painful and exhausting. And I’m less of a “I demand results” kind of person when it comes to myself because I’m too busy trying to make sure my kids get the help they need for their MHE.

And I’ll be honest…I don’t make the time for myself like I should. There’s just so many other things on my mind that by the time I come back around to my issues, it’s too late to make a phone call.

So it gets put off, and put off…until today, apparently.

Today, because I’m taking the time to write a post about it–I thought to call my family physician. I can’t see her until next week, but I’ll get recs for x-rays and see if she could forward them to the specialist with another note requesting an appointment. Hopefully this time, I’ll get one. If not…well. I’ll adjust, because I have to.

I’m not sure what I could really do to ease this particular MHE ailment of mine. At least for my wonky knee and ankles, I’ve got braces. I don’t think one can really brace their ribs at an attack from the inside. Heh. I may have just envisioned my tumor wearing battle gear while poking at my ribs with it’s sword.

Clearly, I haven’t been very sleeping well, because sleeping is also significantly more uncomfortable now.

Living with a chronic pain disorder sucks. I typically just grin and bear it, because this is my life–it’s the only one I’ve got and I’d rather live in the good than the bad. At least I’m breathing. At least I’m not dying. At least a million other things that could happen aren’t happening.

At least I have this moment, and the next, and the ones after that.

The pain, the discomfort, the specialist appointments, the surgeries, and all that other stuff aside–life is good.

Sometimes, this motivates me to let go of the negative, because life is good…it really is. Other times, this thought stifles me. I almost feel like I can’t truly show the pain, the discomfort, the specialist appointments, the surgeries, and everything else negative because of all the positives in my life.

But this is my life with MHE, and it’s all woven together.


  1. Even though it’s not life-threatening, I do wish doctors took pain more seriously because it does threaten our quality of life. I hear you on the putting things off front. Sometimes I get so tired of being dismissed, it’s just easier to put it off.

    I hope your doctor can expedite an appointment with the specialist, though. You deserve basic necessities like sleep. And even sexy times. 💜

  2. Michelle Heron

    Over a year ago I went to the doctor complaining about pain in my back and neck because I thought something was going on with the rod in my back. Al, the doctor said was it was just tension and stress but now I’ve lost a significant amount of strength in my left arm to the point where I can barely lift a pot without the assistance of support. It’s frustrating but we adapt. Hopefully you get some answers soon.


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