Breast Cancer

Frequently Asked Questions

5. What are the symptoms of breast cancer?

When breast cancer first develops, there may be no symptoms at all. But as the cancer grows, it can cause changes that women should watch for. You can help safeguard your health by learning the following warning signs of breast cancer.

  • a lump or thickening in or near the breast or in the underarm area
  • a change in the size or shape of the breast
  • a dimple or puckering in the skin of the breast
  • a nipple turned inward into the breast
  • fluid, other than breast milk, from the nipple, especially if it's bloody
  • scaly, red, or swollen skin on the breast, nipple, or areola (the dark area of skin around the nipple)
  • dimples in the breast that look like the skin of an orange.

Don't Ignore Symptoms

You should see your doctor about any symptoms like these. Most often, they are not cancer, but it's important to check with the doctor so that any problems can be diagnosed and treated as early as possible.

Some women believe that as they age, health problems are due to "growing older." Because of this myth, many illnesses go undiagnosed and untreated. Don't ignore your symptoms because you think they are not important or because you believe they are normal for your age. Talk to your doctor.