- A lump or nodule in the breast or the armpit region. As this lump grows, it gets attached ot the skin of the breast.
- Lymph nodes become enlarged and papable in the axilla on the side of the disease.(Early detection)
- Nipple retraction
- Nipple discharge
- Change in size and shape of the breast and the nipples
- Change in the look of the skin surrounding the nipples and the breast region, looking reddish in colour
- Delayed age at first pregnency. fewer children and shorter duration of breast-feeding.
- Oestrogens treatment
- Fibrocyctic breast disese
- Exposure to the ionizing radiation
- Early age at menarche and late age at menopause.
- Family history of breast cancer.
- Added to this is the lifestyle, excessive alcohol consumption and smoking increases the risk.
- Self-examinations are important
- Yearly mammogram (if dense breasts, MRI should be preferred over mammogram.)
- X-rays after the age of 40 or even after 35 itself if there is a family history.
- Physical examination
- Blood test or Blood cancer marker test
- CA 15.3: used to find breast and ovarian cancers
- TRU-QUANT and CA 27.29: may mean that breast cancer is present
- CA125: may signal ovarian cancer, ovarian cancer recurrence, and breast cancer recurrence
- CEA (carcinoembryonic antigen): a marker for the presence of colon, lung, and liver cancers. This marker may be used to determine if the breast cancer has traveled to other areas of the body.
- Circulating tumor cells
- Lumpectomy - wherein the breast lump with a rim of surrounding breast tissue is removed
- Mastectomy - removes whole or most of the breast and possible nearby structures.
- Chemotherapy or Radiation therapy
- Hormonal Treatment
- Targeted therapy
Advances in the treatment of malignancies have been progressing rapidly along with the awareness of this disease thus patients are advised to go through regular follow-ups.