Noticing Breast Cancer Symptoms

Not every woman’s breast cancer is discovered through a lump. In fact, some breast cancer symptoms may be disguised as another cause of pain and ignored until the cancer has progressed. It’s important to remember that any breast cancer symptom can be gradual or sudden onset, and is most common in only one breast or one nipple but can sometimes be apparent in both. If you ever have second thoughts about your mysterious breast symptoms, seek attention from your medical provider as soon as possible. Below are a few breast cancer symptoms to be vigilant of:

Pain in any area of the breast. If you notice pain when you brush your arm or hand against your breast, it may be a sign that there is inflammation within. Not all breast pain, however, is due to cancer. Various hormone changes, like if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or experiencing or nearing to your menstrual cycle can be other factors.

Redness, especially when accompanied by warmth, on any area of the breast. If you self-examine your breasts and notice any discoloration, such as redness, you may have a cause for concern. If you can feel heat on the areas of redness, you may want to strongly consider seeking an opinion from your medical provider.

Discharge from the nipple, including blood. If you are not breastfeeding, discharge, including blood from the nipple is an indicator of potential breast cancer.

Any change in the size or shape of the breast. Hormone changes can often times explain this symptom, but occasionally can present as breast cancer, especially when a woman is older. As a tumor grows, the breast can enlarge or even shrink. Additionally, if the contour of a breast has changed in any ways it can signal potential abnormal growth.

Thickening or swelling of the breast. Beyond enlargement, if your breast feels more dense or swollen to the touch, seek attention from your medical provider to get an opinion.

Dimpling of the breast’s skin. If you notice any imprint pattern on the skin of your breast, similar to the texture of an orange peel, it could be a sign of breast cancer. While sometimes the cause of dimpled skin on the breast could be a benign factor, it’s best to get checked.

No matter the symptom(s), keep record of what you are experiencing and bring any concerns forward to your medical provider. Breast cancers are most treatable when found early, so seeking attention at any concern is your best avenue for treatment success and optimal health. Visit a referring provider and schedule your mammogram at 712-754-5304.