Breast cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer in women. During their lifetime, about 1 in 8 women are at risk of developing it.
What are the signs and symptoms?
The main signs and symptoms of breast cancer are as follows:
- Palpable mass in the breast
- Abnormal mammogram without a palpable mass
- Persistent pain in the breast
- Discharge of fluid or blood from the nipple
- Changes in the size or shape of the breast
- Retraction of the nipple or skin of the breast
- Redness or cracks in the skin of the breast
Is self-examination always recommended?
These days, specialists talk more about observing your breasts. It is no longer a question of a precise method of palpation or even a suggested frequency. Instead, healthcare professionals recommend being on the lookout for changes in the breasts. It is important for a woman to know her breasts well and to observe them carefully at any age. This way, she will be able to detect any changes in visual appearance and sensation to the touch. There is no wrong way to look at breasts; you just need to stay alert. It is also important to involve your partner, if possible. Immediately consult with a healthcare professional if you have noticed recent and persistent changes.
What about a mammography?
A mammography is the only recognized early detection method that reduces the risk of death from breast cancer. This examination should be carried out every 2 years from the age of 50 and up to 69 years.
Early detection improves the chances of survival, which is why it is important to be vigilant. If you’re ever in doubt, talk to your healthcare professional.