National Breast Cancer Awareness Month: Have you checked yourself recently?

Breast Cancer 3

By WVUA 23 News Reporter Carlie A. Horn

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, which means it’s a good time to consider getting an exam if you’re overdue.

Early detection is crucial for better outcomes and less invasive treatments.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the most common symptoms include:

  • A new lumps in the breast or underarm
  • Thickening or swelling of part of the breast
  • Irritation or dimpling of breast skin
  • Redness or flaky skin in the nipple area or the breast
  • Pulling in of the nipple or pain in the nipple area
  • Nipple discharge other than breast milk, including blood
  • Any change in the size or the shape of the breast
  • Pain in any area of the breast

University Medical Center OBGYN Dr. John McDonald said self-exams are important because more than half of all breast cancer cases are found by the patient.

“We actually use the phrase ‘be aware of your breast,’ ” McDonald said. “Instead of doing an exam every month on your breast for mass, we ask women to be aware of their breasts all the time. If they detect any abnormalities and are aware of something that is not normal, call the doctor and get an appointment for an exam.”

Women younger than 40 should get a breast exam every two or three years, but yearly gynecological exams usually include a breast exam as well.

Women 40 or older should talk with their doctor about getting a mammogram.

breast cancer 3
waiting room doctors office
waiting room doctors office

Categories: Archives, Local News