Breast pain in women can be one of the warning signs of breast cancer. When symptoms arise, patient must seek an immediate medical attention to rule out the cause of pain. Breast pain can be divided into two types as follows:
- Cyclical breast pain is associated with menstrual cycle. This is the type of breast pain that is most commonly found in women. The pain occurs due to hormonal imbalances in the body and it starts during ovulation and lasts until the menstruation begins. The pain could sometimes occur in all the areas of the breast, on one side or both and can radiate to the underarm area.
- Noncyclical breast pain is unrelated to your menstrual cycle. The pain is constant most of the time or more severe in certain area which caused by:
- Breast abnormalities, e.g., breast cancer, tumor or lump in the breast, breast cysts, breast injury, Mastitis, breast abscess, symptoms related to breastfeeding, and side effects of breast augmentation.
- Breast abnormalities caused by external factors, e.g., a chest muscle strain or injury, Costochondritis, trauma or injury to thorax and ribs.
Breast self-examination should be done once a month, seven days after your menstrual cycle. Examining the physical appearance of your breasts in the mirror for dimpling or bulging of the skin is vital. Observe if there are any visible distortion in the shape, size, texture or colour, or if there is an unusual discharge such as blood or puss-like fluid or even milk from the nipple. If such abnormality is found during the examination or experience unusual breast pain, consult your doctor immediately for a proper diagnosis. Currently, we have a 3D digital mammogram technology in conjunction with additional examinations such as ultrasound, which will increase the accuracy of the diagnosis.
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