Home Health How to do self-examination for early detection of ‘breast cancer’, the number one cancer in women…

How to do self-examination for early detection of ‘breast cancer’, the number one cancer in women…

by news dir

picture explanationMammography examination picture. For early detection of breast cancer, mammography is recommended every 2 years from the age of 40.

Breast cancer has the highest incidence worldwide. According to data from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in 2020, more than 2.26 million patients were newly diagnosed with breast cancer in one year. In Korea, the number increased 4.3 times in 17 years from 6,237 in 2000 to 26,534 in 2017.

Breast cancer is caused by multiple factors. Genetic mutations and family history are the main causes. Women with BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutations have a 60-80% increased risk of developing breast cancer in their lifetime. If a parent or sibling has breast cancer, the risk increases by two to four times. Relatives are 1.5 to 2 times more likely to develop the disease.

The duration of exposure to female hormones also has an effect. It is known that the risk of breast cancer is 1.5 to 2 times higher in women who take early menarche or late menopause, take oral contraceptives, or undergo hormone replacement therapy after menopause. Breast cancer has no symptoms or pain. Periodic self-examination and breast examination are important for early detection.

◇ Breast cancer self-examination is recommended one week after menstruation

Self-examination is important for early detection of breast cancer. It is advantageous for premenopausal women to self-exam one week after the onset of menstruation. That’s when the breasts are the most tender. Postmenopausal women are recommended to have regular self-examinations once a month. The self-examination method is implemented in three steps. The first step is ‘observing in front of a mirror’. Check for changes in the shape of your breasts. The second step is ‘standing or sitting facilitating’. Check the entire breast and armpits with the 2nd to 4th knuckles. The third step is to lie down and examine the same as the second step method.

Breast cancer is painless. Most breast pain has a physiological cause. Over 90% of the time, it disappears naturally. However, if the lump is touched or the skin around the lump changes, it may be a symptom of breast cancer. Depending on the location of the lump, the likelihood of cancer cannot be predicted. Usually, if a middle-aged woman feels a hard lump the size of a pea without pain, it may indicate breast cancer. Another danger sign is that the skin around the lump enters like a dimple or turns like a tangerine peel. If there are lumps near the nipples and discharge from the nipples that are red or dark red, it is better to get a breast cancer test.

Professor Kim Jae-il of the Department of Surgery at Inje University Ilsan Paik Hospital said, “Not all lumps in the breast are cancer, but there is a possibility that they may be cancer depending on age or accompanying symptoms. necessary,” he said.

◇ Women with dense breasts are at higher risk of breast cancer

Dense breasts have a higher proportion of mammary tissue than adipose tissue. Women with dense breasts also have an increased risk of breast cancer. Korean women have a higher percentage of dense breasts than other countries, so management is essential.

Dense breasts are not easy to detect. It is not easy to confirm cancer with only general mammography examination. Because X-rays are difficult to penetrate, there is a limit to detecting breast tumors. For women with dense breasts, performing breast ultrasound along with general mammography is advantageous for early detection of breast cancer. Professor Kim Jae-il said, “Women with dense breasts can confirm more detailed lesions through breast ultrasound. recommended,” he said.

◇The most accurate prevention method: self-examination and mammography

There is no definitive way to prevent breast cancer. The most accurate prevention methods are ‘breast self-examination’ and ‘mammography’ for early detection. Women with no significant risk factors should start breast self-examination once a month from the age of 30. From the age of 35, see a breast examination by a mammologist. From the age of 40, mammography is recommended every 2 years. Women with risk factors such as family history should be screened earlier.

Kim Jae-il, a professor of surgery at Ilsan Paik Hospital, said, “Women who are anxious about self-examination due to symptoms or risk factors can consult with a mammologist and then conduct a check-up tailored to the individual. Although important, obesity and alcohol consumption are also risk factors for breast cancer, so proper exercise at least 5 times a week along with diet control is the first step in preventing breast cancer.”

Step 1 = Observe in front of a mirror

– Look in the mirror and observe with the naked eye to compare changes in the shape or contour of the breast.

Step 2 = Facilitate standing or sitting

– In a standing or sitting position, gently palpate the first knuckles of the 2nd to 4th fingers using the floor. Examine the entire breast and armpits as if drawing a circle. Squeeze the nipple area and check for abnormal discharge.

Step 3 = Palpate while lying down

– Inspect in the same manner as in step 2, and check for abnormalities found in the supine position.

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