How Can You Go About Getting the Proper Breast Cancer Diagnosis?
Breast cancer is something that no one wants to face in life, but getting the proper diagnosis early is best. The earlier you catch it, the better chance you have of stopping it before it gets too bad. Here are a few things you can do to go about getting the proper breast cancer diagnosis.
The first thing to look for is any symptoms at all. If you feel you have any of the symptoms that are related to breast cancer, it is vital you schedule a doctor’s exam. During the exam, expect to be asked questions about personal and family health history that may be related to your cause.
The doctor will check the general signs of health at first, and then will perform a breast exam. They may perform just one breast exam, or they may look at a few different tests. There are three tests they may look at; palpation, mammography, or ultrasonography.
A palpation allows the doctor to learn a lot about a lump. Everything from the size, texture and how easy it moves can be identified by palpation, which is when the doctor feels the lump and the tissue around it. Benign lumps will feel different than cancerous ones.
Mammography is simply X-rays of the breast that can give the doctor important information about the breast. If something looks suspicious or does not look right, additional X-rays will be performed.
Lastly, ultrasonography uses high-frequency sound waves that can often show whether a lump is solid or filled with fluid. Typically, doctors will perform a mammography with an ultrasonography.
After receiving one of these tests or a few of them, the results will determine whether the doctor feels further tests are needed. However, often the doctor will have to remove fluid or tissue from the breast to make a proper breast cancer diagnosis.
An aspiration or needle biopsy is when the doctor uses a needle to remove fluid or a small amount of tissue from the breast. If the lump is filled with a fluid-filled cyst, it is not cancerous. But if it has a solid mass, it may or may not be cancerous. If tissue is removed, it is sent to a lab to be checked for cancer cells.