Severe chest pain, possibly with some relief, may leave you wondering if this is something serious. A breast lump is often the focus of people’s attention and encourages them to see a doctor.
Although breast cancer usually shows no symptoms at an early stage, early detection can turn a history of breast cancer into a surviving history.
What Is A Lump In My Chest Or On My Breast?
Although a breast tumor is usually associated with breast cancer, these tumors are not usually cancerous. Most are benign or non-cancerous.
Common causes of breast lumps include:
- Breast infection
- Fibrocystic breast disease (“lumpy breasts”)
- Fibroadenoma (non-cancerous tumor)
- Fat necrosis (damaged tissue)
With fat necrosis, a large cancerous tumor cannot be distinguished without biopsy.
Although most breast tumors are caused by less serious conditions, new, painless tumors are the most common symptom of breast cancer.
Early Warning Signs Of Breast Cancer
Initially, a person may notice a change in their breasts when they have a monthly breast examination or a mild pain that does not seem to go away. The early symptoms or sings of breast cancer may include:
- Changes in the shape of the nipple
- Chest pain that does not go away after your next period
- A new lump that doesn’t go away after your next term
- Discharge from the nipple that is clear, red, brown or yellow
- Unconscious redness, swelling, skin irritation, itching, or rash on the breast
- Lumps or swelling, around the collarbone, or of under the arms
Severe lumps are more likely to cause cancer.
Symptoms after breast cancer include:
- Receding or turning the inside of the nipple
- Enlarged breasts
- Dimples on the surface of the chest
- An existing lump that grows
- “Orange peel” texture on the skin
- Poor appetite
- Undivided weight loss
- Enlarged lymph nodes in the armpits
- Painful veins on the chest
You do not have to have one or more of these symptoms to get breast cancer. For example, nipple discharge can also be caused by an infection. If you experience any of these signs and symptoms, see your doctor for a complete diagnosis.
Warning Signs For Men And Breast Cancer
Breast cancer is not usually associated with people who were assigned a male gender at birth. But breast cancer can rarely occur at any age, although it is more common in older men.
Many people do not realize that people who were assigned a boy at birth also have breast tissue, and these cells can cause cancerous changes. Because male breast cells develop much less than female breast cells, breast cancer is less common in this part of the population.
The most common symptom of breast cancer is a lump in the breast tissue that is assigned to the male sex at birth.
In addition to the tumor, symptoms of male breast cancer include:
- Thickening of breast tissue
- Nipple discharge
- Redness or peeling of the nipple
- A nipple that moves backwards or inwards
- Unconscious redness, swelling, skin irritation, itching, or rash on the breast
Most men do not check their breast tissue regularly for symptoms of lumps, so male breast cancer is often diagnosed later.
Other Causes Of Pain And Tenderness
We often associate pain with something bad, so when people feel tenderness or pain in their breasts, they often think of breast cancer. But breast pain is rarely the first sign of breast cancer. Many other factors can cause pain.
Medically known as mastalgia, chest pain can also be caused by the following.
- Hormonal fluctuations due to menstruation
- Some birth control pills
- Some fertility treatments
- A bra that doesn’t fit
- C cyst of the breast
- Large breasts, which can be accompanied by pain in the neck, shoulders or back
Types Of Breast Cancer
There are two types of breast cancer:
- Noninvasive (in situ) cancer is cancer that does not spread to the original tissue. This is known as stage 0.
- Invasive (Infiltrating) cancer is cancer that spreads to surrounding tissues. They may be categorized as Level 1, 2, 3, or 4.
Affected tissue determines the type of cancer:
- Ductal carcinoma, is that type of cancer, which forms in the lining shape of the milk ducts. And it is the most common kind of breast cancer.
- Lobular carcinoma is a cancer of the lobules of the breast. Lobules are the places where milk is produced.
- Sarcoma is a cancer of the connective tissue of the breast. It is known as the rare kind of breast cancer.
Diagnosis Of Breast Cancer
When you see your doctor with concerns about chest pain, tenderness, or a lump, there are common tests they can do.
1- Physical Examination
Your doctor will examine your breasts and the skin of your breasts, as well as nipple problems and discharge. They can also feel your breasts and armpits in search of lumps.
2- Medical History
Your doctor will ask you questions about your medical history, including any medications you are taking, as well as the medical history of your family members.
Because breast cancer can sometimes be linked to your genes, it is important to tell your doctor about any family history of breast cancer. Your doctor will also ask about your symptoms, including when you first saw them.
Your doctor may order a mammogram, which is a chest x-ray, to help differentiate between a benign and malignant mass.
Ultrasonic sound waves can be used to create images of breast tissue.
Your doctor may prescribe MRI along with other tests. This is, another kind of non-invasive imaging test, that is used to examine or for checkup the breast tissue.
This involves removing a small amount of breast tissue that will be used for testing.
Treatment Of Breast Cancer
Depending on the type and stage of the cancer, treatments may vary. But there are some common practices that doctors and specialists use to fight breast cancer.
- A lumpectomy is performed when your doctor removes a tumor that is holding your breast.
- A mastectomy is when your doctor surgically removes all breast tissue, including tumors and connective tissue.
- Chemotherapy is the most common treatment for cancer and involves the use of antacid drugs. These drugs interfere with the ability of cells to reproduce.
- Radiation uses rad radiation beams to directly treat cancer.
- If genes or hormones play a role in the development of cancer, then hormone and target therapy can be used.
Signs Of Recurrence Of Breast Cancer
Despite initial treatment and success, breast cancer can sometimes return. This is called repetition. Recurrence occurs when very few cells survive the initial treatment.
The symptoms of recurrence in the same place as the first breast cancer are very similar to the symptoms of the first breast cancer. These include:
- A new lump in the breast
- Nipple changes
- Redness or swelling of the breasts
- A new thickening near the mastectomy scar
If breast cancer returns regionally, it means that the cancer has returned to the lymph nodes or near the real cancer, but not exactly in the same place. Symptoms may vary slightly.
Symptoms of regional recurrence may include:
- A lump in the lymph nodes or near the collarbone
- Chest pain
- Numbness or pain, in the shoulder or arm of the body
- Swelling in the arm, like real breast cancer
If you have had a mastectomy or other surgery for breast cancer, you may have a lump or lump in the newly formed breast due to scar tissue. It’s not cancer, but you should tell your doctor about them so they can be monitored.
Outlook And Prevention Of Breast Cancer
As with any cancer, early detection and treatment are important factors in determining outcomes. Breast cancer is easily treated and usually resolves early on.
According to a reliable source from the World Health Organization, breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. Whether you are worried about breast pain or tenderness, it is important to be aware of the risk factors and warning signs of breast cancer.
The best way to fight breast cancer is to find out early. Talk to your doctor about starting a regular mammogram schedule.
If you are concerned that your chest pain or tenderness may be serious, see your doctor today. See your doctor if you get a lump in your breast (even if your recent mammogram was normal).