Breast Cancer Beyond the Lump: Understanding Other Signs to Look Out For

Breast cancer is a prevalent disease that affects millions of individuals worldwide, with one in eight
women in the United States expected to be diagnosed with the disease in her lifetime. While awareness
campaigns advocate for regular breast exams and awareness of the common symptom of the disease, a
lump, there are other lesser-known signs and symptoms to look out for. Early detection has been proven
to increase the chances of survival, and this post aims to inform you of six signs of breast cancer beyond
the typical lump that you need to keep an eye on.

1. Nipple Changes: Changes in the appearance of the nipple, including becoming inverted or changing
its direction, should be a concern. It may also become  atter, or there may be a rash or crusting present.
Any of these nipple changes, coupled with pain, can be a sign of breast cancer.

2. Bloody Nipple Discharge: Discharge from the nipple is common, but you need to be wary if it’s
blood-stained. This particular type of discharge is an indication of breast cancer, and it’s essential not to
ignore it.

3. Breast Dimpling or Thickening: Alongside the lumps found in regular breast exams, shallow yet noticeable
indentations on the skin of the breast known as dimpling can also occur. Additionally, you may
notice a thickening on the skin of the breast that appears similar to an orange peel.

4. Unhealed Sore on the Breast: Often overlooked, a sore on the breast that hasn’t fully healed or keeps
coming back, should be examined. This abnormality could indicate underlying breast cancer and
requires a thorough check.

5. Swollen Lymph Nodes in the Armpit: Your lymphatic system has glands located under the armpits that
may enlarge when your immune system is  ghting an infection. However, if the swelling persists, it could
indicate lymph node involvement due to an underlying case of breast cancer.

6. Breast Pain: Breast discomfort is common, especially in women who menstruate. However, if the pain
is continuous or severe, seek medical attention. Unexplained pain in the breast, not relieved through
over-the-counter medication, may be the only sign of breast cancer present.

Breast cancer can manifest in various ways, with the lump being the most obvious symptom. However,
the six symptoms mentioned in this post are often overlooked and can be an early indication of breast
cancer. Knowing and understanding them, and promptly seeking medical attention when observed, can
lead to an earlier diagnosis and a better prognosis. Breast cancer affects both men and women, and
educating yourself with the lesser-known symptoms beyond the lump is crucial. So the next time you
undergo a breast examination, or perform a self-check, keep an eye out for these six signs and follow up
with your medical provider immediately if they persist. Early detection is key.