Q:

What are the most common early symptoms of breast cancer?

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Quick Answer

Some early signs of breast cancer include changes in the feel or appearance of the breast or nipple, or nipple discharge, according to the National Breast Cancer Foundation. It is recommended that women perform monthly self-exams of their breasts to look for changes that might occur that are indicative of breast cancer.

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What are the most common early symptoms of breast cancer?
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Full Answer

Changes in how the nipple or breast feel can be warning signs for breast cancer, notes the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Thickening in or around the breast or underarm, lumps or nipple tenderness should be evaluated by a doctor. In addition, a change in the texture of the skin or an enlargement in the pores of the skin on the breast should be cause for alarm. This is often described as skin on the breast that feels tough and rigid, like the skin on citrus fruit. A lump in the breast should also be looked at by a doctor, although the presence of a lump does not necessary indicate breast cancer.

Changes in the shape or size of the breast, dimpling of the breast, swelling of the breast or recent changes that make one breast appear larger than the other may also indicate a problem. Finally, discharge from the breast, especially when it is bloody or clear, should be evaluated as a potential sign of breast cancer, recommends the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

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