Breast Problems - Topic Overview
Breast self-examination (BSE) involves checking your
breasts for lumps or changes while standing and lying in different positions
and while looking at your breasts in a mirror. Once you know what your breasts
normally look and feel like, any new lump or change in appearance should be
evaluated by a doctor. Most breast problems or changes are not caused by
cancer. But BSE should not be used in place of clinical breast examination
and mammography. Studies have not shown that BSE alone reduces the number of
deaths from breast cancer.
cancer is often seen on a
mammogram before there are any symptoms. The most
common symptom of breast cancer is a painless lump. But sometimes painful
lumps are cancerous. Other symptoms of breast cancer include:
- Skin changes, such as dimpling or
- Nipple discharge.
- Darkening of the area around
- A nipple being drawn inward.
- Any breast
problem that lasts more than 2 weeks.
- A breast lump in a man.
men, enlargement of male breast tissue (gynecomastia) is a
noncancerous breast change. Breast buds are common in teenage boys during puberty. The buds may last up to 2 years, but they tend to go away within the first year. Breast buds develop because of rapid
changes in hormone levels.
Treatment of a breast problem depends on the cause of the
Check your symptoms to decide if and when
you should see a doctor.