Breast cancer, what to look out for

03 October 2019

Miss Harleen Deol, Consultant Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon at Spire Harpenden Hospital, outlines practical advice about how to check your breasts and signs to look out for.

It is important to know how your breasts look and feel normally, so that if you notice a change, you can present to your doctor. Most women’s breasts change during the month and many women find self-examination difficult or daunting. I therefore recommend a few simple ways of regularly checking your breasts:

Look at your breasts in the mirror once a month:

  • Has there been a change in the size or shape of either breast?
  • Are there any new changes to the nipples, eg inversion (change in the protrusion or flattening), rash around the nipple skin?
  • Are there any lumps bulging out of the skin or dimples in the skin?

With your arms raised above your head look at the outline, shape and the bottom of the breasts:

  • Does one look very different to the other?
  • Is there a discharge or fluid or blood from the nipple?
  • Do you have constant or persistent pain in the breast or in the arm pit?

What do I do if I have one or more of these symptoms?

If you have any of these symptoms I recommend you see your GP to be referred to a Breast Rapid Access Diagnostic Clinic. During the clinic visit you will be seen and examined by a Breast Surgeon who can then ensure a mammogram and/or ultrasound of the breasts is organised as needed and the results explained to you. Any further testing will be explained as needed.

“As soon as I sat down for my first consultation with Miss Deol, she gave me the biggest hug and I knew that I would get the support I needed from her. There was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to choose Miss Deol to go ahead with the procedure.”
- Miss Deol's patient (testimonial)

To find out more about the services offered at Spire Harpenden, or to book your rapid access breast consultation please call 01582 788 412.

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