We all know it’s important to have annual physicals, to know the general state of our health, and prevent any potential future issues. However, certain parts of the body may often need separate annual check-ups as well. Breast exams are a method to check for any lumps or abnormalities in the breast tissue, as a preventative measure.

What You Need To Know About Breast ExamsWhat is a clinical breast exam?

A clinical breast exam is a physical exam done by a healthcare provider. They will examine your breasts and underarms for any lumps, changes in skin texture, or other abnormalities. This exam is usually done as part of your regular check-up with your primary doctor, or a gynecologist.

When should I start getting breast exams? And how often?

It is recommended to begin regular clinical breast exams, every 1 – 3 years, at age 20. After age 40, clinical breast exams should be done every year, and it is recommended to begin mammograms as well. However, some healthcare providers may suggest starting exams earlier if there is a family history of breast cancer or other risk factors. It is recommended for breast exams to be performed after the end of your menstrual cycle. 

What is a clinical breast exam like?

During a clinical breast exam, you will be asked to undress from the waist up. Your healthcare provider will then examine your breasts, one at a time, and underarms for any lumps or abnormalities, by pressing with their finger tips. The exam should only take a few minutes and is not painful. You will likely be asked questions before or during the exam about any pain or discomfort you’ve been experiencing, and any known history of breast cancer in your family.

What is a home breast exam?

A home breast exam is a self-exam that you can do on your own. It can be a good way to get an idea of what is “normal” for your body, and to note any changes to discuss at your next appointment. It is not recommended to rely solely on home breast exams to detect breast cancer. However, it can be a useful tool in addition to regular clinical breast exams, and may increase comfort with breast exams for when it is time to see your doctor.

What happens if a lump is found?

If a lump is found, it is important to contact your healthcare provider right away. They may order additional tests such as a mammogram, ultrasound, or biopsy to determine if the lump is cancerous or not.

Greece Obstetrics and Gynecology LLP in Greece, NY understands the importance of these screenings as part of overall physical health. They offer a wide arrays of gynological and obstetric care, including annual exams, prenatal care, family planning and menopausal transition. To schedule an appointment, call (585) 225-6680 or visit their website.


Original: https://connect2local.com/l/156281/c/5086228/what-you-need-to-know-about-breast-exams

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