There are times wherein some women still fail to palpate the breast mass that they have even if they are doing the Breast Self-Examination properly. This is because they do not know how to tell if these masses are just lumps of fat or life-threatening masses. If you don’t want to be one of these women, then here are some of the things that you need to know about the characteristics of this deadly breast mass.
The characteristics of a benign breast mass
The characteristics of these lumps are similar to the lumps that are caused by a condition called fibrocystic breast disease. These lumps are often round-like in shape. Women might get the impression that they are just floating in the tissues since there are times wherein these lumps are embedded superficially. There are also certain circumstances wherein it is embedded in the deeper tissues which are why it is not as moveable as the others. The lumps are a little harder than the rest of the fatty components of the breast. There are also times wherein it touching them can cause pain or discomfort.
Taking a look at breast mass pictures
Some women who can feel lumps on their breasts think that they will be able to diagnose what they have if they take a look at these pictures. What they do not realize is that it is quite impossible to feel the exact shape of the lump on the breast since its real shape is masked by the fats that are naturally embedded in this part of the body. The situation can be made worse if the breasts are surgically enhanced since it can fully mask the real shape of the mass. This is the reason why you should not rely on pictures alone.
You need to go to the doctor immediately if you were able to feel a lump in one or both of your breasts. You should be afraid to go to your physician just because you are afraid of being diagnosed with cancer. What you need to remember is that having these types of lumps do not necessarily mean that you have this condition. For this reason, you need to keep an open mind about undergoing a series of diagnostic procedures as these exams can save your life.
Breast Mass Differential Diagnosis:
- History – In this part of the diagnostic process, you will be asked about the changes that you were able to see or feel in your breasts. You should inform your health care provider about the changes that you were able to see or feel no matter how irrelevant they might seem. This is the reason why it pays to try to remember these kinds of things the night before you go to your doctor. By doing so, you will not just be able to save some time on your end. You will also be able to make the jobs of the health care professional who is going to ask you these questions a lot easier.
- Exam – Your doctor will need to perform a physical examination on your breast in order to determine if you need to undergo specific laboratory exams in order to determine what you have. You don’t have to worry about this one so much because the exam would be similar to the procedures in Breast Self-Examination. The only difference is that you will not be the one who is going to do the palpations.
- Mammogram – One of the main reasons why physicians do not make their patients take this exam immediately is because it can be very uncomfortable for women. This is also the reason why a lot of women are afraid to sign up for this diagnostic procedure even if they are well aware of its importance. If you are feeling the same way, then you need to remember that this is one of the most efficient ways to detect the presence of breast cancer. The long term benefits highly outweigh the fact that you will feel uncomfortable for a couple of seconds.
- Breast Ultrasound – This is a lot less invasive and uncomfortable than the mammogram. As a matter of fact, it is not really that different from the rest of the types of ultrasounds out there. This is the reason why a lot of women prefer to take this exam. What they do not realize is that it cannot really give the doctors a picture that is clear enough for them to diagnose the presence of a disease. This is the reason why the results are regarded as supplementary evidence.
- Breast mass biopsy – With the use of this exam, the doctors will be able to analyze the characteristics of the lumps on your breasts. The results of this exam will determine their next move. This exam is more invasive than the other diagnostic exams though. However, the results that it is going to provide can mean life or death in almost every situation. This is the reason why you should undergo this procedure if your doctor thinks that you need to even if you are very confident that the breast mass that you were able to palpate is nothing.