For many years, there has been debate about how valuable breast testing is for early detection of breast cancer and increases the chances of survival. But times have changed. In fact, breast self-testing actually works.
What is breast self-examination:
Breast self-test is a test a woman performs at home to find changes or problems in her breast tissue. Many women believe that it is important for their health. And indeed it is.
Breast self-examination or regular breast examinations can be an important way to detect breast cancer in the early stages, when it will be more likely to have successful treatment. Although no single test can detect all types of breast cancer at an early stage, we believe that self-monitoring of the breast in combination with other screening methods may increase the likelihood of early detection.
Breast self-diagnosis may help:
1. the knot
3. Other breast abnormalities
How to Perform a Breast Self-Exam: The five steps
Breast Self Examination – Step 1: Start by looking at your chest in a mirror with your shoulders and arms straight over your shoulders.
Here’s what you should look for:
- Breasts of normal size, shape and color.
- Chest uniform without visible deformity or swelling
If you notice any of the following changes, bring them to your doctor’s attention:
- Dimple, wrinkled, or protruding skin
- Nipple that changed position, or inverted nipple (pushed inward, not sticking out)
- Redness, sore throat, rash or swelling
Breast Self Examination – Step 2: Now raise your hands and look for similar changes.
Breast Self Examination – Step 3: When you are in the mirror, look for any signs of fluid coming out of one or both nipples (it may be water, milky or yellow fluid or blood).
Breast Self Examination -Step 4: Then feel your chest while lying down, use your right hand to feel your left hand, and then your left hand to feel your right chest. Touch the first finger firmly and lightly so that your fingers are flat and together. Use a circular motion about a quarter in size.
Cover the entire chest from top to bottom, from armpit – from cap to upper abdomen and from armpit to crack.
Follow the pattern to make sure that you cover your entire chest. You can start with the nipple, moving in larger and larger circles until it reaches the outer edge of the chest. You can also bend your fingers up and down in rows, as if you are mowing the lawn. This up-and-down approach works best for most women. Be sure to feel the entire tissue from the front to the back of the chest: For the skin and tissues below, use gentle pressure; Use moderate pressure on the tissue in the middle of the chest; Use strong pressure on the deep tissue of the back. When you penetrate deeply into the tissue, you should feel like a chest.
Breast Self Examination – Step 5: Finally, feel your chest while you are standing or sitting. Many women find it easier to feel their breasts when their skin is wet and slippery, so they like to take this step in the shower. Cover your entire chest using the same hand movements as described in step 4.
How to Prepare for a Breast Self-Exam
The best time for an independent breast examination is a few days after the end of the menstrual cycle. Hormonal changes can affect the shape and feel of your breasts, so when your breasts are in good condition, it is better to pass the exam.
Women who do not have menstruation should choose a specific day for the exam, for example, the first day of each month.
You must also keep a journal of your exams. This will help you track and record the changes you see in your chest.
Risks of a Breast Self-Exam
With an independent examination of the breast, there is no medical risk. Detecting a lump in the chest can be annoying, but most lumps are not fatal. They are usually caused by other, benign conditions.
Breast self-testing is also associated with an increase in unnecessary breast biopsies, including surgical removal of breast tissue. Because most abnormalities in breast tissue are not fatal, women are at risk of rare complications such as bleeding and infection from additional surgical procedures.
What to do if you find a lump
If you feel that you feel a lump in your chest, do not panic. Most female breasts always have lumps or lumps, and most of the breasts are benign (not cancerous). There are several possible causes of non-malignant breast structures, including common hormonal changes, benign breast conditions, or trauma.
Feel free to call your doctor if you notice swelling or other changes in the chest that are new and annoying. This is especially true for changes that occur in more than one menstrual cycle or in some way seem more or more noticeable. If you have a menstrual period, you can wait until the end of your period to see if your breast tumors or other changes disappear before meeting your doctor. The best provider will be the one who knows you and has previously done a breast exam for you – for example, your gynecologist, primary care physician, or nurse who works with your gynecologist or primary care physician.
Know what to expect. At the time of appointment, to assess a lump of breast, your doctor will take a medical history and do a physical examination of the breast, and most likely will write a test to visualize the breast. Ultrasound is often the first or only imaging test used to evaluate tumors in women under 30, pregnant or nursing. Ultrasound and mammography are usually recommended for evaluation of a tumor in women over 30 years of age who are not pregnant or breastfeeding. If further testing is required, your doctor may recommend additional imaging with MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), MBI (molecular imaging of the breast) and / or biopsy. He or she can also refer you to a breast specialist (usually a breast surgeon) for further evaluation.
Make sure you have answers. It is important that your doctor gives you an explanation of the cause of lumps or other changes in the mammary gland and, if necessary, a monitoring or treatment plan. If you don’t like the doctor’s advice first, feel free to get a second opinion.