Breast self evaluations, exactly what to look for when checking for breast cancer

Exam

Everyday Dr. Donald Breit with Bryan Health sees women who come in after they’ve noticed something unusual about their breast. It’s a big reason why being familiar with them  is crucial.

What exactly do those changes consist of? For starters, many are familiar with checking for lumps. In addition, there’s nipple changes like inversion. Or, skin changes including dimpling or retraction. A good example of dimpling would be if your skin resembled an orange peel. On top of that, any changes in swelling or fullness of your breast.

If you happen to notice a change, there isn’t always a need for panic, it could be related to your period.

“If it’s a very subtle change and you’re menstruating then it might be worth waiting three or four weeks. There can be changes while a woman is menstruating,” Dr. Breit said.

The best time to check is 7 to 10 days after your period.

How do you look for these changes? The best thing to do is look in the mirror face on and raise your arms. Then you’ll need to apply pressure to begin looking for those abnormalities.

“If you’re going to palpate your breast, I would take your index finger and our middle finger and go up and down, it’s better it makes sure you don’t miss areas. I would do a combo of light pressure and heavier pressure,” Dr. Breit said.

If you do find something, give your doctor a call to get it checked out. Even through the pandemic, those yearly mammograms are still important.

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