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8 Characteristics of Breast Cancer that are Important for You to Recognize

Women need to be aware of breast cancer. This type of cancer certainly should not be underestimated because it can cause serious health problems and even be life threatening. So, what are the symptoms of breast cancer that are important to pay attention to? Check out the full range of symptoms below.

8 Characteristics of Breast Cancer that are Important for You to Recognize

Characteristics of Breast Cancer that are Easy to Recognize

Apart from cervical cancer, breast cancer is another frightening specter for women. However, many women do not understand the early signs of breast cancer.

This is what causes breast cancer to be detected when it has reached an advanced stage and the possibility of recovery is getting smaller.

The following are characteristics of breast cancer that are easy to recognize and deserve attention, including:

1. Lumps appear in the breasts and underarms

The characteristics of breast cancer that are easy to recognize and the most common are the appearance of lumps in the breasts and under the armpits.

Lumps like this can indeed appear when a woman is menstruating. However, lumps become a problem when they don’t disappear after menstruation is over. Could be, this is an early sign of breast cancer.

Generally, lumps in the breasts and the area under the armpits do not cause pain although some may feel them. In the initial phase, the lump is not very visible until you touch it.

Therefore, you are advised to regularly check your own breasts and visit your doctor immediately if you find a lump that has been there for several days to weeks.

2. Swelling of One Breast

In addition to the appearance of a lump, swelling in one breast is also an easily recognizable feature of breast cancer.

Indeed, ideally the size and shape of the two breasts are not absolutely the same. However, this difference was not significant.

Another case if the difference in size and shape of the breast looks significant. Could be, this is an early sign of breast cancer. In addition, swollen breasts also cause effects such as being attracted.

Don’t delay to see a doctor if you find irregularities in the size and shape of your breasts.

3. Swelling of the Lymph Nodes

In addition to the breast area, swelling of the lymph nodes located in the armpit area is also a feature of breast cancer that is easy to recognize and you should be aware of.

This happens when breast cancer is already at an advanced stage so that cancer cells have spread to the area around the breast.

Not only that, cancer cells also cause abnormal changes in the tissue in the lymph nodes.

4. Nipples Release Fluid

Discharge from the nipples when not breastfeeding can be a sign of breast cancer.

The liquid that comes out of the nipples can vary in color from milky white like breast milk, yellow, green, even reddish in color.

If you experience this one symptom, you should visit a doctor for further examination.

Apart from being a feature of breast cancer, discharge from the nipples can also be a sign of a number of other conditions such as:

  • Breast infection.
  • Side effects of using birth control pills.
  • Side effects of using drugs.
  • Changes in body physiology.
  • Thyroid disease.

Also Read: Is High Cholesterol Really Linked to Breast Cancer?

5. Nipples Go Inward

The growth of cancer cells in the breast tissue can cause damage to the cell tissue behind the nipples. This condition causes the nipple to appear inward rather than protruding.

In addition, the size and shape of the nipple in the affected breast will also change.

Actually, changes in the size and shape of the nipples can occur during menstrual periods and ovulation.

However, if these changes occur accompanied by inverted nipples outside of the ovulation and menstrual periods, then this can be an indication of breast cancer.

Therefore, immediately visit the doctor for further examination.

6. Skin Texture in the Breast Area Changes

Has the skin texture in the breast area changed? If so, it’s best to do an examination immediately because changes in skin texture are also symptoms of breast cancer.

Cancer cells that attack breast tissue can cause inflammation (inflammation). Changes in skin texture due to this disease include:

  • The skin has thickened in some areas of the breast.
  • Scaly skin, especially around the nipples and areola.
  • Itchy skin (rare).

This change in breast skin texture commonly occurs in a rare type of breast cancer called Paget’s disease.

However, changes that occur in skin texture are not always caused by breast cancer. There are a number of types of skin diseases that are also the cause, such as atopic dermatitis.

Therefore, check yourself if you notice a change in skin texture in the breast area.

7. Reddish Breast Skin Color

In addition to changing skin texture, another easy-to-recognize feature of breast cancer is the skin color in the breast area that looks reddish. In some cases, the skin color of the breast turns purplish or bluish which looks like bruises.

Changes in breast skin color are not always caused by breast cancer. It can also be caused by a number of other conditions such as infection or trauma.

If the skin is red but you don’t experience trauma or infection, immediately do a medical examination so that you can find out the exact cause of the discoloration of the breast skin.

8. Breasts Feel Sore

Pain in the breasts and nipples can also be a symptom of breast cancer. The emergence of pain and discomfort accompanied by a decrease in the level of firmness of the breasts and nipples is the impact of cancer cell invasion.

In some cases, cancer sufferers also feel a burning sensation in the breast area.

If you suddenly feel pain in your breasts for no particular reason, immediately consult a doctor for further examination.

Also Read: 12 ways to prevent breast cancer that women need to know

Breast Cancer Diagnosis

In establishing a diagnosis of breast cancer, doctors need to carry out a series of examination procedures, including:

1. Anamnesis

The doctor will first ask a number of questions related to the conditions experienced by the patient. Questions asked such as:

  • How long has this condition lasted?
  • What symptoms are felt?
  • Do you have a history of breast surgery?
  • Do you have a family member with a history of breast cancer?

2. Physical Examination

After that, the doctor will do a physical examination of the breasts to see if there are any abnormalities in terms of size, shape, and so on from the patient’s breasts.

Also Read: Is it true that soybeans can reduce the risk of breast cancer?

3. Ultrasound or Mammogram

After completing the history and physical examination, the doctor will conduct a breast cancer screening test using ultrasound or the mammogram method.

Ultrasound and mammograms are common imaging methods used to diagnose breast cancer. This examination will produce an image of the inside of the breast which will then be analyzed by a doctor.

If you feel the characteristics that have been mentioned, it is highly recommended to immediately consult a doctor to determine the exact condition. The earlier breast cancer is detected, the greater the chance of recovery.

You can prevent breast cancer by adopting a healthy lifestyle, such as consuming a balanced nutritious diet, exercising regularly, and avoiding cigarette smoke. Hopefully this information is useful, Healthy Friends.

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  5. Nall, R. 2018. What are the signs of breast cancer, are there other than a lump?. (Accessed 27 February 2023).

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