Breast cancer symptoms vary from person to person and there is no exact definition of what a lump or mass feels like. The best thing to do is to be familiar with your breasts so you know how “normal” feels and looks. If you notice any changes, tell your doctor. While regular self-exams are important, many breast cancers are found through regular screening mammograms before any symptoms appear.
Breast cancer symptoms may include:
- Lump or mass in the breast
- Lump or mass in the armpit
- Breast skin changes, including skin redness and thickening of the breast skin, resulting in an orange-peel texture
- Dimpling or puckering on the breast
- Discharge from the nipple
- Scaliness on nipple, which sometimes extends to the areola
- Nipple changes, including the nipple turning inward, pulling to one side or changing direction
- An ulcer on the breast or nipple, sometimes extending to the areola
- Swelling of the breast
These symptoms do not always mean you have breast cancer. However, it is important to discuss any symptoms with your doctor, since they may also signal other health problems.
Some cases of breast cancer can be passed down from one generation to the next. Genetic counseling may be right for you. Learn more about the risk to you and your family in our prevention and screening section.
Cancer screening exams can detect cancer early, when the chances for successfully treating disease are greatest.
MD Anderson offers breast cancer screenings at the following locations:
- MD Anderson in Sugar Land
- MD Anderson West Houston
- MD Anderson The Woodlands
- Texas Medical Center
MD Anderson patients have access to clinical trials
offering promising new treatments that cannot be found anywhere else.