Doctors Dismissed A Woman's Back Pain As Fatigue. Turns Out She Has Terminal Cancer

March 22, 2019

Many dangerous illnesses have symptoms that people tend to dismiss as nothing serious. However, this delays treatment and, consequently, reduces the chances of recovery.

Link between back pain and breast cancer

Back pain is rarely an early symptom of breast cancer, but it can signal about a tumor in its later stages.

Africa Studio /

READ ALSO: What Causes This Weird, Metallic Taste In The Mouth? 8 Common Causes Of The Symptom, And What To Do About It

Metastatic breast cancer spreads to other parts of the body and can affect the bones, leading to their deterioration. Back pain can be a sign that cancer has spread to the spine and exerts pressure on the spinal cord, nerve roots, or that the vertebrae are being deformed due to the destruction of bone tissue. So, pain can be felt not only in the place of the tumor but also along the entire length of the spine.

Albina Glisic /

On the other hand, it's important to remember that back pain is a very common problem, which is far more often caused by the degeneration of intervertebral discs, arthritis, or intervertebral hernia.

Tori Geib's Story

32-year-old Tori Geib was plagued with back pain for a long time. The woman went to the hospital, but all three rheumatologists said depression-caused fibromyalgia was to blame.

However, the pain didn’t go away. A month after Tori was prescribed antidepressants, she felt a lump in her chest. Only then did the doctors understand that they were dealing with a far more serious disease. After a mammogram and biopsy, Ms. Geib was diagnosed with breast cancer.

The tumor has spread to the spine, damaging one of the vertebrae. Tori pointed out that if she had been properly diagnosed sooner, the consequences of the disease wouldn’t be so severe.

READ ALSO: Woman Who Lost One Breast To Cancer Urges People Not To Be Ashamed Of Their Scars

Ms. Geib seeks to raise women's awareness of this little-known symptom of breast cancer and speak out about the importance of timely examination and correct diagnosis.

Image Point Fr /

We also remind you that women under 40 should get a regular ultrasound of the mammary glands, and after 40, mammograms as well as self-examination. This can help identify breast cancer in its early stages and increase the chances of full recovery.

READ ALSO: Attention, Ladies! Does A Lump Always Mean Breast Cancer?

This article is solely for informational purposes. Do not self-diagnose or self-medicate, and in all cases consult a certified healthcare professional before using any information presented in the article. The editorial board does not guarantee any results and does not bear any responsibility for any harm that may result from using the information provided in the article.