Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in women, and it is important to be aware of the warning signs. The seven main signs of breast cancer are inflammation of the lymph nodes under the arm or around the collarbone, swelling of all or part of the breasts, breast or nipple pain, nipple retraction, redness, scaling, or thickening of the skin on the nipple or breast, and discharge from the nipple. Mammograms (low-dose breast x-rays) are the most reliable way to detect breast cancer early. However, mammograms alone can't detect all cases of breast cancer, so it's important to pay attention to any sudden changes in the texture or appearance of the breast and report them immediately to your doctor.
The most common sign is a painless lump in the breast, which can be located anywhere on the chest wall up to below the armpit. For women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, redness, swelling, itching, and pain are usually signs of a breast infection such as mastitis, which can be treated with antibiotics. If you have any signs of infection such as redness, swelling, or discharge, seek medical attention as soon as possible. The way your breasts look and feel can be affected by menstruation, having children, losing or gaining weight, and taking certain medications.
The fibrocystic condition causes non-cancerous changes in the breasts that can cause lumps, tenderness, and pain. When the tumor is small in the early stages of breast cancer, it is rarely noticeable to the touch or the naked eye. Your multidisciplinary team will work with you to develop a personalized plan for
treating breast cancerin a way that fits your individual needs and goals. It may be in the same breast (local), in the lymph nodes close to the original cancer (regional), or in a part of the body that is further away (metastatic or distant).
Therefore, a breast self-exam, a clinical breast exam, or even a mammogram may not detect inflammatory breast cancer.