What are Breast Cancer Symptoms
Breast cancer is a disease in which cells in the breast grow out of control. There are different kinds of breast cancer. The kind of breast cancer depends on which cells in the breast turn into cancer.
Breast cancer can begin in different parts of the breast. A breast is made up of three main parts: lobules, ducts, and connective tissue. The lobules are the glands that produce milk. The ducts are tubes that carry milk to the nipple. The connective tissue (which consists of fibrous and fatty tissue) surrounds and holds everything together. Most breast cancers begin in the ducts or lobules.
Breast cancer can spread outside the breast through blood vessels and lymph vessels. When breast cancer spreads to other parts of the body, it is said to have metastasized.
It is important to know and understand how your breasts feel and look normally in order to maintain good breast health. This is accomplished by performing personal examinations and having regular Breast Cancer screenings.
All women need to be informed by their health care provider about the best screening options for them. When you are told about the benefits and risks and decide with your health care provider what screening test, if any, is right for you, this is called informed and shared decision-making.
Although breast cancer screening cannot prevent breast cancer, it can help find breast cancer early, when it is easier to treat. Talk to your doctor about which breast cancer screening tests are right for you, and when you should have them.
An article from the American Cancer Society states:
“The most common symptom of breast cancer is a new lump or mass. A painless, hard mass that has irregular edges is more likely to be cancer, but breast cancers can be tender, soft, or rounded. They can even be painful. For this reason, it is important to have any new breast mass, lump, or breast change checked by a health care professional experienced in diagnosing breast diseases.
Other signs of Breast Cancer include:
Swelling of all or part of a breast (even if no distinct lump is felt)
Skin irritation or dimpling (sometimes looking like an orange peel)
Breast or nipple pain
Nipple retraction (turning inward)
Redness, scaliness, or thickening of the nipple or breast skin
Nipple discharge (other than breast milk)
Where to go to get screened for Breast Cancer:
You can get screened for breast cancer at a clinic, hospital, or doctor’s office. If you want to be screened for breast cancer, call your doctor’s office. They can help you schedule an appointment. Most health insurance plans are required to cover mammograms every one to two years for women beginning at age 40 with no out-of-pocket cost (like a co-pay, deductible, or co-insurance).
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention offer free or low-cost Mammograms. Click on their link to find out if you qualify