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Medical Health Issues

Health Issue: Breast Cancer

Diagnosis

Early breast cancer usually does not cause symptoms. This is why regular breast exams are important. As the cancer grows, symptoms may include:

  • Breast lump or lump in the armpit that is hard, has uneven edges, and usually does not hurt
  • Change in the size, shape, or feel of the breast or nipple -- for example, you may have redness, dimpling, or puckering that looks like the skin of an orange
  • Fluid coming from the nipple -- may be bloody, clear-to-yellow, or green, and look like pus

Men get breast cancer, too. Symptoms include breast lump and breast pain and tenderness.

Symptoms of advanced breast cancer may include:

  • Bone pain
  • Breast pain or discomfort
  • Skin ulcers
  • Swelling of one arm (next to breast with cancer)
  • Weight loss
  • Mammography is the most effective way of detecting breast cancer early.

Contact your physician if:

  • You have a breast or armpit lump
  • You are a woman age 40 or older and have not had a mammogram in the last year
  • You are a woman age 35 or older and have a mother or sister with breast cancer, or have already had cancer of the breast, uterus, ovary, or colon.
  • You do not know how or need help learning how to perform a breast self-examination

 


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