How Healthy Are Your Breasts?
Pages in this Story:
- Why Your Breasts Hurt
- Culprit #1: You're about to get your period.
- Culprit #2: You've got fibrocystic breasts.
- Culprit #3: Your diet.
- Culprit #4: You're overdoing it at the gym.
- Culprit #5: Your meds.
- New Reasons to Get a Mammogram
- What to Do If You Find a Lump in Your Breast
- Straight Answers to Your Biggest Questions
What to Do If You Find a Lump in Your Breast
About four in five of all breast lumps biopsied are benign, according to the Mayo Clinic. Still, it's imperative to get it checked out as soon as possible by an experienced health professional, says Dr. Norton. Your doctor will feel the lump and may order a mammogram, MRI, or ultrasound to help distinguish between a solid mass, which is more likely to be cancer, and a fluid-filled mass, which is more likely to be a benign cyst. If you have dimpled or thickened skin, bloody nipple discharge, a rash on the nipple, or redness of the breast, see your doctor even if you don't feel a lump, since these might also be warning signs.
Then, says Dr. Norton, if the lump is solid, the doctor will remove cells using a needle and examine them under a microscope. If the cells are benign, a breast specialist may still advise removal of the lump, depending on the type of benign cells or how the lump feels or looks. If the cells are malignant, your doctor will discuss treatment options, which might include surgery, medication, chemotherapy, or a combination.
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