If you are a woman who recently did a self-breast exam and noticed there is a small lump present on one of your breasts, your reaction will most likely be one of concern. Finding a lump in the breast is a situation that should be monitored to determine its status and whether treatment is necessary for its removal. Here are some steps you can take after a self-breast exam so you get the best possible care.
Consider The Timing And Intensity Of The Lump To Determine Action
After finding the lump, consider at what point in your monthly cycle you are currently. If you are having your period, natural lumps in the breast tissue may be a bit more noticeable at this time. Wait until after you have finished menstruating and repeat the breast exam to see if the lump is less noticeable, If both of your breasts have slight lumpy areas, and they feel the same, it may be normal breast tissue you are feeling. If a lump is hard, painful, or if you have done self-exams in the past and the lump is new, testing will be necessary.
Have Tests Performed To Make A Diagnosis Of Your Condition
It is best to see your regular doctor as soon as you possibly can if the lump is causing you distress. They will do a complete physical to determine your overall health and will recommend you have a mammogram done to take a look at the interior of your breasts for any areas of concern. This will show any masses that may need to be tested for cancerous cells. A breast MRI may also be done to pinpoint the exact location of a lump found in a breast. If there is indeed a suspicious lump present, a biopsy will be done to find out if it is benign or cancerous.
Take Steps In Breast Care After A Diagnosis Is Made
If the lump is deemed benign after tests are conducted, the doctor may allow you to go about your routine as normal. If the lump enlarges in size, it can be removed surgically. If the lump is cancerous, your doctor will recommend you see an oncologist to properly treat your medical condition. They may recommend surgically removing the lump so that the cancer does not spread throughout the body. If the cancer is metastatic (spread to other parts of the body), your oncologist, like those at Sturdy Memorial Hospital and similar locations, will prepare a plan in treating your condition. This may involve medication, hormone therapy, radiation, or chemotherapy.