Symptoms of breast cancer
AMATURE human female’s breast consists of fat, connective tissue and thousands of lobules – tiny glands which produce milk. The milk of a breastfeeding mother goes through tiny ducts (tubes) and is delivered through the nipple.
The breast, like any other part of the body, consists of billions of microscopic cells. These cells multiply in an orderly fashion – new cells are made to replace the ones that died.
In cancer, the cells multiply uncontrollably, and there are too many cells, progressively more and more than there should be.
Cancer that begins in the lactiferous duct (milk duct), known as ductal carcinoma, is the most common type. Cancer that begins in the lobules, known as lobular carcinoma, is much less common.
SYMPTOMS OF BREAST CANCER
A symptom is only felt by the patient, and is described to the doctor or nurse, such as a headache or pain. A sign is something the patient and others can detect, for example, a rash or swelling.
The first symptoms of breast cancer are usually an area of thickened tissue in the woman’s breast, or a lump. The majority of lumps are not cancerous; however, women should get them checked by a health care professional.
Women who detect any of the following signs or symptoms should tell their doctor: A lump in a breast A pain in the armpits or breast that does not seem to be related to the woman’s menstrual period
Pitting or redness of the skin of the breast; like the skin of an orange
A rash around (or on) one of the nipples A swelling (lump) in one of the armpits An area of thickened tissue in a breast One of the nipples has a discharge; sometimes it may contain blood
The nipple changes in appearance; it may become sunken or inverted
The size or the shape of the breast changes
The nipple-skin or breast-skin may have started to peel, scale or flake.