A breast lump is a small, raised portion of the breast that is different from the rest of the breast and also differs from the same area on the other breast. The lump may or may not have a definite border; the texture of the skin may be different from the skin on the rest of the breast and may vary from smooth to rough; and the lump may or may not be painful. The tissue is thick in the area of the lump.
Breast lumps are worrying; they are associated with diseases like cancer and fill one with dread. However, the truth is that breast lumps are benign in most cases and may also be the symptoms of other benign disorders. Listed below are the most common breast conditions and the symptoms of breast lumps. Any breast lump should be examined by a doctor for further evaluation and treatment. Although rare, men can present with symptoms of breast lumps too.
Symptoms Of Breast Lumps
Fibrocystic Breast Disease (Fibroadenosis)
This is a benign condition of the breasts. The breast symptoms include a feeling of discomfort and overall tenderness in the breasts. The breast lumps that are observed in this condition, are irregular. These breast lumps may be fluid-filled cysts or just lumps in the breasts which look like swellings. The nipples become tender. The patient experiences itching in the breasts. These symptoms usually change depending on the time and phase of the menstrual cycle the patient is in. Also, in most cases, the symptoms disappear once menopause is attained.
This is a benign condition. The symptoms of breast lumps are very defined here. The lumps present as small, hard, and well-defined masses. When they are pressed gently with a finger, one can feel them move about easily under the finger. These lumps are usually painless.
They occur during the years when a woman is capable of bearing children and tend to increase in size during pregnancy. The skin over these lumps has a rubber-like feel to it, unlike the rest of the breast.
Breast cysts are benign. A breast cyst is a fluid-filled sac that is present in the breasts. However, all of these cysts are not filled with fluid; some of them are known to be filled with gaseous substances and even semi-solids. The breast lumps present themselves as round masses that look like water-filled balloons. They are usually painless. They vary in size and can grow up to a few centimeters. Unless a woman starts hormone replacement therapy, they usually disappear when a woman reaches menopause.
This is the most scary breast disease of all and is a malignant condition. Unfortunately, symptoms of breast lumps do not present themselves until a later stage – when the disease has spread or the tumor has grown.
When they do present themselves, breast lumps show up as irregular lumps. They may also present as thickened skin anywhere on the breasts or the underarm. Dimpling of the skin may or may not be noticed.