Skip to content

    Breast Cancer Health Center

    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Q&A: Breast Cancer in Young Women

    continued...

    Q: Are symptoms of breast cancer in younger women the same as in older?

    Yes, Lichtenfeld says. These may include a mass in the breast, unexplained pain, a change in the texture of the skin, redness, or inflammation.

    Any changes in the nipple should be looked at, too, says Kruper, as well as an enlargement in one breast only.

    Q: What should a woman do if she notices any of these symptoms?

    "Go see your doctor and expect the symptoms to be taken seriously," Kruper says.

    Q: What can women under 40 do to lessen breast cancer risk?

    "Maintain a healthy body weight and exercise regularly," Lichtenfeld says. "Follow a healthy diet, preferably more plant-based than meat-based."

    He gives the advice to keep a healthy body weight, he says, despite a lack of evidence of a link between obesity in childhood or young adulthood and breast cancer. "On the other hand, in postmenopausal women, obesity is a risk factor increasing the risk of breast cancer," he says.

    Exercise should be consistent, Kruper says. She tells her patients to get in 40 minutes, four to five times a week. It should be a good cardiovascular workout, she says -- ''not just Pilates or yoga."

    Be aware of how much alcohol you drink, Lichtenfeld and Kruper agree. Alcohol raises breast cancer risk, experts agree, but much is not known about the link. Even small amounts of alcohol have been linked with a higher risk, Lichtenfeld says. The American Cancer Society recommends no more than one drink a day, he says.

    "According to the research, the less you drink the better," Lichtenfeld says.

    1 | 2 | 3

    Today on WebMD

    Breast Cancer Overview
    From mammograms to living after treatment.
    Dealing with breast cancer
    Get answers to your questions.
     
    woman having mammogram
    The 3 latest tips to know.
    woman undergoing breast cancer test
    Most abnormalities aren’t breast cancer.
     
    Resolved To Quit Smoking
    VIDEO
    Breast Cancer Treatments Improving
    Article
     
    Woman getting mammogram
    Article
    Screening Tests for Women
    Article
     
    serious woman
    Article
    Pink badge on woman chest to support breat cancer
    QUIZ
     
    what is your cancer risk
    Article
    breast cancer survivors
    Article