Women should be alert for identifying the various breast cancer symptoms and signs. This is because over 40000 women in the US succumb to the ailment every year. However, detection at an early stage has increased the chances of survival considerably since the last couple of decades. Today, breast cancer is no longer the death blow as it was once regarded.
In order to grow awareness, you should understand your body and identify the observable indications of breast cancer. This is important in tackling this destructive disease.
Causes of breast cancer
The cancer which develops in tissues, glands and ducts of the breast is known as breast cancer. This is the disease which affects a large number of women as well as, to a smaller extent, men.
While experts are undertaking extensive research about the causes of breast cancer, there are some aspects which increase the chances of the disease.
If a woman had developed the disease beforehand, she is likely to grow the breast cancer symptoms and signs again. She may also experience the problem if she has had any benign breast developments. Family history also plays a major role. First degree relatives including mother, daughter or sisters with the condition may pose a threat to the woman.
If the cancer starts at a young age in them, it means that you are at an increased risk of growing it as well. You should also take into account the age in which you began menstruating and the age of termination. If you menstruated at a young age, and experienced menopause at an older age, both situations increase your chances of developing breast cancer.
Childless women are susceptible to the risks, as are those who experience hormonal replacement therapy during menopause. Some other risk factors include obesity, alcoholism, poor diet and exercise habits, and radiation exposure.
Common breast cancer symptoms and signs
Some of the common signs of breast cancer may include the lump. Often, women do not notice it until their attention is directed towards it by their health care provider. The lump is not identifiable to young women as they have denser breast tissue. However, if you are not menstruating, remember that your breast will not be lumpy.
Other outward breast cancer symptoms and signs which you must not ignore are any discharge from your nipple, alterations in its appearance, changes in the breast skin or areola, changes in the feelings in your breast or nipples, pain unrelated to your menstrual cycle and formation of lump near the collar bone, armpit or breast.
Often, women experience a red or blooded discharge near the nipples. Remember that the discharge is common after a delivery or once you have stopped nursing. At times, medications may even lead to discharges. The doctor examines the discharge to investigate malignant cells.
The skin of the breast may dimple too. If you notice any of these breast cancer symptoms and signs, it is best to see a doctor. You may even include an annual mammogram checkup which is indispensable in breast cancer.