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Friday, January 22, 2010

Breast Cancer (Day 2)-- Self Exam

Could I have breast cancer? What are some signs?
There are no specific outward signs of breast cancer that you can feel or see. "If there are outward signs, the more common ones include a lump, an area of thickening, or a dimple in the breast. Less common signs include breast swelling and redness or an enlarged underarm lymph node." (http://www.breastcancer.org/questions/bc_signs.jsp?gclid=CMbz3eO9tp8CFRUeDQod3HVKzg)
Although, even having one or more of these signs does NOT mean you have breast cancer. Remember, that most of these signs usually turn out to mean nothing. Having said that, it is still extremely important that you make an appointment to see your doctor right away. Not only will having your doctor take a look put your mind at ease, but if it does turn out to be something, you can get everything taken care of right away. Any cancer in its earliest forms are easier to get rid of and put into remission, then forms at a later stage.
Women with a family history of breast cancer, could be at a higher risk of developing breast cancer later on in life. (Make sure you know your family's history...) Breast cancer affects 1 of every 7 women of the course of their lifespan. 


Breast Self Examination (It's going to get a little weird...)
(5 Easy Steps)
Step 1: Begin by looking at your breasts in the mirror, with your shoulders straight and your hands on your hips. You're looking to make sure that your breasts look normal. Normal color, shape, and size. You are also looking to make sure that your breasts are evenly shaped with no distortions or swelling.
If you see any changes in your breasts, be sure to point them out to your doctor, such as:

  • Dimpling
  • Puckering
  • Bulging
  • Nipple that has changed position (such as inverted [pushing inward instead of sticking out])
  • Redness
  • Soreness
  • Rash
  • Swelling

Step 2:
Now raise your arms above your head and looks for the same changes.
Step 3:
While you are standing in front of the mirror check for any signs of leaking fluids. (Such as watery, milky, yellow fluid or blood) 
Step 4:
Next, feel your breast while laying on your back. Use your right hand to check your left breast and vice versa. Use a smooth, firm touch, using only your first few fingers, keep your fingers together. Use a small circular motion about the size of a quarter. Be sure to check all of your breast, top to bottom, side to side.
Step 5:
Finally, check your breasts, in the same manner, while standing up or sitting down. Most women find that it is easier to do this exam while you are in the shower, so the skin is easier move across. Make sure you cover the entire area of your breast as you did in step 4. 


I know this entry went very in depth, and it's not for everyone to read, but it's very important that you know how to check yourself, and what to look for. Thank you for taking the time to read this, and please don't be afraid to look up some of the information and statistics for yourself. Also, please help donate for those who can't afford to get their yearly mammogram exam.



The Breast Cancer Site

1 comment:

  1. Good information, I'm sure it will help someone. :) keep bloging!

    ReplyDelete

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