The development of a malignant growth within the breast tissues, caused by uncontrolled and cell division is the medical definition of breast cancer. The ducts that carry milk in the breasts can be affected by this cancer, known as ductal carcinoma, as well as the lobules that produce milk in the breast, known as lobular carcinoma. This cancer can be non-invasive or invasive. When the cancer starts in the breast’s milk ducts, this is known as invasive ductal carcinoma, and this can spread not only to other parts of the breast, but to the rest of the body as well. Unfortunately this is more common that breast cancers that are non-invasive
Below are some of the various warning signs and symptoms of breast cancer.
Lumps Appearing on the Breast
The most common symptom of breast cancer is the appearance of a lump. These can often go unnoticed for some time due to the lumpy and uneven anatomy of the breasts. A lump can be found anywhere from the armpit to the entire breast and is a thickening sort of feeling. Some people may experience irritation or tenderness near the area, but the lump is generally a small, pea sized shape with no pain.
Nipple Changing in Structure
Changes occurring in the nipple are a very early symptom. Many women will notice that their nipples may look retracted, meaning that they begin to get pushed inward. Pain and irritation, along with a change to a reddish color may also be observed in the nipples.
Some women may notice discharge coming from the nipples, from time to time which can be blood-stained, clear or thick.
Changes in Breast Size
The change of breast shape and size is another very common change that many women with breast cancer notice. Since these changes generally happen gradually, the size might have already changed considerably before one notices what is happening. It does vary from woman to woman whether the size of the breasts decreases or increases. This means that some women will see an increase in their breast size, while other women will experience an increase in size. Another symptom is a sudden change in the cup shape, or form, of the breast.
Changes in the Color and/or Texture of the Breast Some patients may notice that the breast color may change to pink or red. This type of change can occur in only certain areas of the breast or over the entire skin of the breast area. The skin of the breast could also take on an orange color those results from scarring. Some people may also notice indentations in the area above the breast or on the breast itself, as well as excessively dry skin and scaling.