7 Breast Symptoms You Should Never Ignore (Breast Cancer Symptoms)

7 Breast Symptoms You Should Never Ignore (Breast Cancer Symptoms)

Breast cancer is the second most common cancer in American women, only behind to Skin Cancer.  It is also the second leading cause of cancer related death, second only to lung cancer.  One in eight women in the US will be diagnosed with breast cancer in her lifetime.

One in Eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer.

Each year, over 250,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and 40,000 women will die from it.  Recognizing breast cancer symptoms early can save your life.   Most people know that a breast lump could be a sign of breast cancer, but there are other less common symptoms you need to watch for too.   Below we will talk about breast symptoms you don’t want to ignore.

Breast Cancer lump and symptoms
Abnormal Breast Cancer Source: visualsonline.cancer.gov

7 Signs of Breast Cancer

  1.  Breast lump.  The number one question patient ask me regarding breast lumps is “ how can I tell the difference between my normal breast tissue, and an abnormal lump.”  The answer I have is, become familiar with how you feel normally.  Breast tissue is lumpy and bumpy.  Know what YOUR normal breast tissue feels like.  That way, you’ll be that much more likely to recognize if something new and abnormal arises right away.Now an abnormal lump is going to feel hard, irregular shaped and non-mobile, meaning you can’t wiggle it in between your fingers.   If you feel the top of your knuckle, that might feel like what an abnormal lump could feel like.
  2. Nipple discharge. Now nipple discharge while your breast feeding is normal that’s called lactating, and can be normal even up to 6 months after you stop breast feeding.  But if you experience discharge beyond this or new nipple discharge, especially bloody discharge, that could be a sign, that something abnormal is going on.
  3. Change in the size or shape of a breast. If you have weight fluctuations, your breast may fluctuate in size as well, but if you notice one breast starts to enlarge, and maybe become lob-sided, or abnormally shaped, that’s not normal.  If that happens, you should have that evaluated by you provider.
  4. A swelling under your arm pit, or above you collar bone. A swelling could be an enlarged lymph node.  Enlarged lymph nodes in these two areas are rarely normal and you absolutely should have those checked out.
  5. Inverted nipple. If you notice over weeks to months, that a nipple is inverting, meaning, going inside out, it could be a sign that a tumor is pulling the nipple tissue inwards.
    Inflammatory Breast cancer
    Inflammatory breast cancer Source: visualonlince.cancer.gov
  6. A change in the skin coloration of breast. IF you notice that you have what appears to be a spider bite, or a rash that doesn’t go away right away.  Or if you notice a change in the texture or consistency of your skin.  If your skin starts to become thickened with little indentations of the skin, something that might look like the skin of an orange, that is a warning sign and needs to be evaluated.
  7. Dimpling of the skin. If you notice that the skin starts to dimple inwards, like it is getting grabbed from underneath, that could be a symptom of breast cancer.  You can watch for this by standing in front of the mirror just after you get out of the shower and just stand in front of the mirror with your arms to your side and just look at the appearance of your breast.  You should also look at your breast while squeezing your hands to your hips, and again squeezing your palms above your head.  If you see anything abnormal, anything new, anything different, make an appointment with your medical provider and have that evaluated

Bottom line is that there are more than just breast lumps that you should be aware of as a sign of breast cancer.  If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, you shouldn’t wait to get it evaluated.   These symptoms don’t always mean breast cancer.  But even if it isn’t cancer, there could be other problems that should be evaluated.   Either way, get them checked out.   These symptoms are not just for women to be aware of.   Don’t forget that men can get breast cancer too.

Help spread the word about breast cancer symptoms

If there were symptoms that I mentioned that you didn’t know about, chances are that your sister, or mom or your daughter also doesn’t know about it,  so share o this with your loved ones and help spread the word about the symptoms of breast cancer.  “   It’s always a tragedy when someone has a symptom of breast cancer, but doesn’t know it’s a symptom of breast cancer.     These symptoms are important to be aware of.  If you have any of these symptoms, don’t wait, or put off getting them checked out.  Remember, if you do have breast cancer, the earlier the diagnosis, the better off you are

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