Breast cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer around the world. While men and women can both be affected, breast cancer most often affects women. About 12% of women in the United States will develop breast cancer at some point in their lives. Every year, almost 270,000 new cases of breast cancer are diagnosed in women. Early detection can save lives, underlining the importance of knowing the early signs of breast cancer to watch for. The following are six common early symptoms and signs of breast cancer beyond lumps.
Breast lumps. The most recognizable sign of breast cancer is a mass or lump in the breast. These lumps are typically painless and hard but some can be painful. Lumps can come in different sizes and shapes. Normal breast tissue may also feel lumpy. This is why breast self-awareness and self-checks are important to recognize when the shape of the breast has changed or a new lump is developing. It’s important to remember that not all lumps are cancer; these lumps can be caused by several benign conditions like cysts.