Early detection is the best way to get a cure. Most of the early cancer patients can save their breast. There are three steps to early detection of breast cancer.
- Breast Self Examination: Monthly breast self examination is one of the key elements in detecting breast cancer early. This makes you aware of the consistency and feel of your breast. The examination has to be performed only once month. Seventh day after your menstrual period would be the ideal day. Menopausal women should choose any one date of a month. Also examine your armpits for any nodules. If you see any new nodule, consult your doctor. The template for self examination is given bellow.
- Clinical Examination: A yearly breast examination by your doctor to look for any abnormalities would be useful in detecting any lumps that are missed by you. These lumps that are detected need further workup to understand their nature.
- Mammography: Mammography is X-ray examination of breast. If this detects any defects that defect has to be investigated further to see if it is cancer. Mammography is only indicated in women older than 40. Younger women can be assessed using ultrasound scan of breast (sono-mammography) if there is a need to do so.