We know how it works, don’t we? We know how common breast cancer is these days, especially among females and probably that’s why we are conscious about examining our breasts once in a while. Timely build ups of the health field and related science has always made sure to provide us with self-awareness on diseases and its management. By this era almost all of us including many men with mammary tissues know how to keep an eye on their breast tissues so as to check for abnormal lumps among the normal fat. For those who don’t know about other important symptoms or the basic ones, do read along to find all about testing and diagnosis of breast cancer.
For beginners, how to check for lumps on Breasts?
We should be glad that self-examination is actually being possible for a disease like this. There could be easy ways that you have identified by yourselves but let’s see how experts put into step wise examinations.
- Placing your arms on your hips and keeping your shoulders straight, take a look at your breasts in a mirror.
- Initially check if breasts are in usual shape, size and color.
- Secondly, raise your arms up and check for these again.
- While doing this, check for fluids coming out of either or both the nipples. The fluid could be just watery, milky, yellowish or even bloody.
- Lay down and try to feel your breasts. Use slight firm touches in a circular motion. Do it all over including top to bottom, left to right sides i.e. from collar bones till abdominal area and from armpit area to cleavage.
- After making sure that you have covered the whole area, now start with your nipples. Move your fingers vertically, horizontally and in circular motion.
- Make sure you can feel almost all the tissues by adding slight pressure.
- Get up and start feeling your breasts while standing or sitting using the same steps mentioned above.
What to check while examining?
- Bulging or crumbling of tissues.
- Swelling or soreness of the breast.
- Change in shape or position of the nipple.
- Repeated irritation on nipples.
- Rashes or redness.
- Inversion of breasts.
- Inversion of nipple.
Is age related to Breast Cancer?
Breaking it down for those who still aren’t aware about it, that age actually can play a great role in breast cancer. However, the reason or science behind this can be easily understood when we start realizing the basics of genetics. Majority of our body cells are as old as we are and the chances for genetic alterations like mutations or damages are more likely to happen as well. Genetic damages being hard to be healed by our body might remain and result in little or acute malignancy. This rapidly or slowly by keeping it aside unnoticed will lead to breast cancer and start showing symptoms. Just like breasts, all the other body parts have the chances for the same condition to occur but breast tissues being adipose tissue rich and normally sedentary to a good extent, will have more chances to form malignancy.
Would you like to break the myths?
Breast cancer being one among the most common diseases and as well as one among those that medical representations try their maximum to spread awareness about, there are chances for people to come with random conclusions or baseless advice. Let’s see some of the common beliefs and myths that people tend to spread among themselves:
- Breast cancer can occur only to older women.
- Breast injuries can lead to breast cancer.
- If breast cancer isn’t genetic among your family, you probably won’t get it.
- Healthy lifestyle might save you from breast cancer.
- Having an abortion can increase chances of breast cancer.
- Wearing black bra can cause breast cancer.
- Nipple piercing can lead to breast cancer.
- Mammograms can spread breast cancer.
- Only the presence of a lump indicates cancer.
- Men cannot get breast cancer.
Probably these reasons could help you in better management
There are some factors which are to be ruled out to avoid breast cancer and those include unhealthy lifestyle including bad sleep-wake schedule, idle activities throughout days, consumption of unhealthy food. Obese people are prone to risk of breast cancer. As mentioned above, age is always a risk factor. Women of 60 years above are to be careful about this. Women with late pregnancy and haven’t got pregnant yet have chances to get breast cancer. Presence of any other cancer can also pave the way to breast cancer.
Clinical methods to diagnose that you need to know.
Besides self-assessments there are many clinical tests that your physician would prescribe before diagnosing or at the starting stage of examinations. Though they are responsible for completely looking into these, still you can get to know this before or take a note on the tests that you might go through. They include: mammogram, CBC (complete blood count), ultrasound scanning, MRI (magnetic resonance imaging), breast biopsy etc.
Mammograms are one among the primary tests prescribed by physicians. It’s basically X-ray imaging of the breasts that takes about a week to wait for the results. Continuing mammograms on time intervals as per physician’s prescription helps you compare your breast conditions and thereby helps you to diagnose better. Commonly used to detect breast cancer in people with very few symptoms. It’s a 20 mins procedure.
CBC (Complete Blood Count)
This blood test which can be done for evaluating the overall health of a person helps you detect cancer as well. This tells you if the body is infected with cancer and takes only a minute to complete the test.
It’s a medical procedure involving collection of sample breast tissue to send it to laboratories. These can involve side effects but are temporary. To avoid such infections, always remember to follow the instructions given by your doctor for post care. There are several other tests used to detect spread of cancer to other body parts from breast tissues and those include the MRI, ultrasound and PET scans.
*PET Scans: Positron emission tomography (PET) test is basically an imaging technique that uses a radioactive drug based on iodine to show metabolic activities, however all cancers can’t be detected. Though it can have side effects like headache, vomiting and rashes, still your physicians can help you with remedies to heal it.
Don’t panic if you’re diagnosed with breast cancer, the ayurvedic medical line is here to help you. Ayurveda, the holistic science has its medical assistance for you to deal with symptoms of breast cancer at its initial and further stages as well. Unlike allopathy medical line using treatments like chemotherapy, Ayurveda has brought you herbal drugs like Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Haritaki (Terminalia chebula), Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis) etc.
Some physicians help you flush your toxins out of the body when diagnosed with the same and it mainly includes a procedure of cleaning your digestive system like vamana and virechana. Some therapies like yoga help you train both your physique and mind.
Breasts are vital accessory organs for every woman starting from adulthood. Providing nourishment to new born babies, new arrival of motherhood has made them understand the importance of these accessory mammary organs. Hence this organ plays an important role in every woman’s and as well as men’s life, if you think not so! Ayurveda is here to support you with therapies for breast cancer.