Thursday, August 12, 2010

Breast cancer, Self examination

The Breast cancer, the commonest cancer in women, affects one in twenty in UK and one in ten in USA. Women more at risk are those that:
·         Started their periods early (before the age of twelve)
·         Had a late menopause (after fifty)
·         Had no children
·         Had their first child in their thirties
·         Had grandmothers, mothers or sisters with breast cancer
Visual examination
                In front of the mirror, put your hands on your head. Look at the size and shape of your breasts, and for any differences between them. Check nipples for changes.
Manual examination
                Feeling your breasts gives you a further change to detect any changes. Breasts are naturally lumpy because they contain milk producing glands, and these may swell at certain times of the menstrual cycle. Breast self examination should therefore take place at the same time each month. It should also include an examination along the collar bone and into the armpit
                Lie down with a folded towel or pillow under. Stretch both arms above your head. As you do so your breasts will lift slightly, giving you another chance to detect any changes in the size, shape and color of your breasts and nipples.
                Put your hands on the hips. Push inwards to tighten your chest muscles. Look for any dimples, puckering or “orange peel” skin that may indicate an underlying lump or abnormal nipple.
Your right shoulder. Keep your right arm by your side and use the closed fingers of your left hand to examine your right breast.
Work above the outside of the breast in a clock wise direction, feeling firmly but gently for any swellings or lumps.
Now bend your right arm at the elbow and raise it about your head to stretch the breast tissue
Examine the inner breast and nipple.
Examine your left breast with your right hand in the same way.

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