Four reasons other than a lump to get a breast check

Breast Awareness and Breast Surgery event

Thursday 5th October at 6.30pm – Nuffield Health Brentwood Hospital

Over the years, looking and feeling for lumps becomes second nature for many women, but there are other signs you should be aware of.

These issues are usually not cancerous, but they are all worth investigating. The golden rule is if you notice a change in your breasts, get it checked. Here are four other changes you shouldn’t ignore.

  1. Inverted nipples

Inverted nipples can be an embarrassing change and one some hope will simply go away with time. There are many reasons why your nipple or nipples may have become inverted including pregnancy, damage from breastfeeding or surgery, age-related breast drooping, an infection or potentially breast cancer.

  1. Breast discomfort

Tender and painful breasts are commonly linked to fluctuating hormone levels during a woman’s menstrual cycle. But your breasts can feel sore for other reasons including mastitis – swollen tissue related to breastfeeding; cancerous or non-cancerous lumps; or an abscess.   

  1. Changes in breast shape

It’s normal for breasts to change slightly over the course of a woman’s menstrual cycle, but when you notice something new or unusual, don’t ignore it. Breast shape and firmness can change around menopause or after a hysterectomy, and hidden lumps that are either benign or cancerous could alter the shape or appearance of your breasts. When considering the shape of your breasts you should be checking them in different positions such as leaning forward and raising your arms above your head. 

  1. Nipple discharge

Experiencing discharge from your nipple is a fairly common breast concern and is usually harmless and easily treated. The most obvious explanation is that you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, but other reasons include duct papilloma, a harmless growth inside your breast duct; duct ectasia, a harmless age-related change in your breasts; or an abscess, a sometimes painful collection of pus usually caused by an infection.

Less common causes for a discharge include hormonal changes around puberty or menopause, and side-effects of the contraceptive pill or other medications. It’s more likely to be cancerous if the discharge includes blood and comes from only one nipple, but breast cancer is a rare cause.

These concerns usually won’t be a result of breast cancer but there is a risk so you should never ignore changes in your breasts. If you are worried, contact your GP or a breast specialist. Nuffield Health is home to a number of clinics including the One-Stop Breast Care Clinic in Brentwood. 

To find out more come along to our next event – Breast awareness and breast surgery open event  on 5th October at 6.30pm

If you would like to find out more about your breasts, family history of cancer, or breast surgery, come along to this open evening. The event will give you the opportunity to listen to presentations by Prof Venkat Ramakrishnan, fully accredited BAAPS/BAPRAS Consultant Plastic Surgeon; Ms Sascha Dua, Consultant Breast Surgeon; Ms Anita Bruce, Genetic Counsellor specialising in Cancer Genetics and Nurse Lee Pope, Breast Nurse.

This event will be held in Nuffield Health Brentwood Hospital, Shenfield Road, Brentwood Essex CM15 8EH

Book: 01277 886 702  

www.nuffieldhealth.com/hospitals/brentwood/events

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