Cancer

Inflammatory Breast Cancer Symptoms

Learning more about inflammatory breast cancer and symptoms will help you to detect inflammatory breast cancer early. Early detection and treatment will help improve your chances of surviving inflammatory breast cancer.

 

Symptoms Of Inflammatory Breast Cancer

  • the breast may feel warm and may look red, pinkish or even orange
  • ridges, welts, pitting or hives may be present on the breast
  • the skin on the breast may  look like the peel of an orange
  • sudden swelling as much as a cup size in a couple of days
  • persistent dark spots that look like bruises
  • a change in the color or appearance of areola (the dark area around the nipple)
  • pain in the breast which can be either sharp stabbing pains or persistent aches
  • discharge from the nipple
  • swelling of the lymph nodes under the arm or near the collarbone

These symptoms result from the blockage of the lymph vessels in the skin by the cancerous cells.

How To Detect Inflammatory Breast Cancer Early

1) Have A Mammogram At Least Once Every Two Years After The Age Of 50

Most women with inflammatory breast cancer are diagnosed in their 50s, earlier than those with other forms of breast cancer. Therefore, go for a mammogram at least once very two years after the age of 50. Even with the absence of lumps in the breast, the increased breast density compared to prior mammograms should be considered suspicious and prompt for more diagnostic tests such as an ultrasound or MRI to be done.

Higher risk groups, such as black women or those with a family history of inflammatory breast cancer or breast cancer, should start having mammograms done at an even earlier age.

2) Get A Biopsy If Your Body Does Not Respond To Antibiotics

If your breasts are swollen, red and sore and are being treated for mastitis, get a referral to a breast specialist and get a biopsy done if there is no improvement after completing your course of prescribed antibiotics.

3) See Your Doctor Right Away If You Exhibit Symptoms Of Inflammatory Breast Cancer

The early signs and symptoms of inflammatory breast cancer include swelling, red or pink skin, rash, dimpled skin texture like that of an orange, hotness, nipple discharge, inverted or flattened nipples, swollen lymph nodes under armpit.

See your doctor without delay and demand to be tested to rule out inflammatory breast cancer.  See inflammatory breast cancer pictures below.

The early signs and symptoms of inflammatory breast cancer are very similar to those of dermatitis or mastitis, as seen in the photo below:

Remember, you do not need to have a lump in your breast to have breast cancer. The frightening reality of inflammatory breast cancer is that you can get this life-threatening disease developing over one to two months. The earlier you detect it, the higher chance you have of shrinking it and surviving from it.