October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month

What is Cancer? 

Cancer occurs when changes called mutations take place in genes that regulate cell growth. The mutations let the cells divide and multiply in an uncontrolled way.

What is Breast Cancer? 

Breast cancer is cancer that develops in breast cells. Typically, the cancer forms in either the lobules or the ducts of the breast.

Lobules are the glands that produce milk, and ducts are the pathways that bring the milk from the glands to the nipple. Cancer can also occur in the fatty tissue or the fibrous connective tissue within your breast.

The uncontrolled cancer cells often invade other healthy breast tissue and can travel to the lymph nodes under the arms. The lymph nodes are a primary pathway that helps the cancer cells move to other parts of the body.

The most common symptoms include:

  • A breast lump or tissue thickening that feels different than surrounding tissue and has developed recently
  • Breast pain
  • Red, pitted skin over your entire breast
  • Swelling in all or part of your breast
  • A nipple discharge other than breast milk
  • Bloody discharge from your nipple
  • Peeling, scaling, or flaking of skin on your nipple or breast
  • A sudden, unexplained change in the shape or size of your breast
  • Inverted nipple
  • Changes to the appearance of the skin on your breasts
  • A lump or swelling under your arm

If you have any of these symptoms, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have breast cancer. For instance, pain in your breast or a breast lump can be caused by a benign cyst. However,  it is very important for you to contact your Medical Healthcare Provider for further examination and testing.

For more information or other helpful tips, visit our free resource section on the LYLWL’s Website.

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