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Inflammatory Breast Cancer Symptoms

Unlike the signs of most other breast cancers, inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) symptoms progress very quickly, often within days or weeks. Inflammatory breast cancer quickly covers the breast in sheets, causing redness, tenderness and thickening of the skin. Most women with IBC never find a lump.

Symptoms of inflammatory breast cancer vary from person to person. If you have symptoms, they may include:

  • Breast swelling that appears suddenly with one breast much larger than the other
  • Itching of the breast
  • Pink, red, or dark colored area on the breast, sometimes with a dimpling of the breast skin that looks like an orange peel (called peau d’orange)
  • Ridges and thickened areas of the skin on the breast
  • Breast that feels warm to the touch
  • Flattened or retracted nipple
  • Breast pain or tenderness

These symptoms usually do not mean you have inflammatory breast cancer.  However, if you notice any of these symptoms, it is important to discuss them with your doctor, since they may signal other health problems.

If you have been diagnosed with inflammatory breast cancer, we’re here to help. Call 1-877-632-6789 to make an appointment or request an appointment online.

Why Choose MD Anderson?

  • First – and largest – comprehensive inflammatory breast cancer program in the world
  • Innovative IBC treatment options include targeted therapies
  • Surgeons, medical oncologists, and radiation oncologists who specialize in treating IBC
  • Personalized team approach to inflammatory breast cancer
  • Advanced diagnostic equipment
  • Active research program offers clinical trials

Inflammatory Breast Cancer Knowledge Center

Treatment at MD Anderson

Inflammatory breast cancer is treated in a special IBC Clinic at our Nellie B. Connally Breast Center.

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