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Benign Breast Conditions Diagnosis & Treatment in Dubai

Benign (non-cancerous) breast conditions are a tumor, cyst, irritation, or nipple discharge (fluid) in the female or male breast that is not malignant or cancerous. Breast cancer is mostly thought to be the cause of most breast abnormalities, however, not all breast conditions are cancerous.

Types of Benign Breast Conditions

Some types of breast conditions include:

  • Calcification: This is a condition in which tiny calcium deposits can appear anywhere in the breast tissue. Usually, they do not present any physical symptoms and are not painful to the touch.
  • Fat necrosis: These are types of lumps that form when areas of fatty breast tissue are impaired.
  • Mastitis: This occurs when an individual’s breast becomes enlarged due to an infection. In most cases, this happens when breastfeeding.
  • Fibroadenomas: These are solid breast lumps, which are the most common types of breast lumps in young
  • Cysts: These are fluid-filled sacs found in the breast and usually occur or change depending on a woman’s monthly menstrual cycle.
  • Fibrocystic breast changes: Fibrosis are breast lumps that might feel rubbery and hard like scar tissue.
  • Nipple discharge: This is a condition in which an individual’s nipple may leak fluid for a variety of reasons.
  • Hyperplasia, adenosis, intraductal papilloma, and lipoma: This is a category of benign breast conditions that is mostly made up of fat tissue.
  • Gynecomastia: This is the enlargement of breast tissue in men.

Less common types of benign conditions:

  • Adenosis: This is when individual’s breast lobules grow and develop more glands than usual.
  • Atypical hyperplasia: Occurs when there is abnormal increase in cell growth in the breast.
  • Intraductal papilloma: This occurs when small tumors form in the nipple’s milk ducts.

Causes of Benign Breast Conditions

There are several causes of benign breast conditions including:

  • The makeup of an individual’s breast i.e. fatty tissue vs dense tissue
  • Age
  • Hormone changes
  • Breastfeeding
  • Menopause
  • Being overweight
  • Birth control pills
  • Hormone therapy

Symptoms of Benign Breast Conditions

Some of the common symptoms of benign breast conditions include:

  • Lumpiness of the breast
  • A feeling of a moving marble in the breast
  • Presence of a lump that may appear red, warm, and painful
  • Nipple discharge
  • Presence of a lump that feels round and hard
  • Breast pain
  • Swollen and tender breasts

Breast conditions manifest differently. Some will cause pain, and some will even remain undetectable unless one feels a lump, or a doctor discovers it during a routine mammogram.

Diagnosis of Benign Breast Conditions

Breast conditions are usually diagnosed through different screening techniques and can sometimes be detected during a routine screening.

When you visit a doctor, he/she might ask questions about symptoms you may be experiencing as well as family history of breast cancer. Afterwards, a physical exam of the breasts is conducted, which is done by the use of hands.

The doctor might then recommend further testing which may involve:

Mammogram: This is done through an X-ray, which produces internal pictures of the breast.

Ultrasound: This is an imaging test that uses high-frequency sound waves to take internal pictures of breast tissue.

Fine Needle Biopsy: If a lump is confirmed, a biopsy may be recommended. During this procedure a thin needle is connected to a syringe and inserted into the lump to remove a sample of tissue or fluid from the lump and sent to the lab for further examination under a microscope.

Treatment of Benign Breast Conditions

Benign breast conditions treatment is dependent on the type of the condition as well as the underlying cause. Treatment may include:

  • Surgery in cases of painful gynecomastia and cysts that cause discomfort
  • Draining in case of fluid build-up
  • Medication where pain and infection are the resulting symptoms
  • Hormone therapy
  • Some conditions like calcification and painless gynecomastia do not require any form of treatment

Most benign breast conditions do not increase the risk of developing breast cancer in future. However, there are some that are associated with a slight increase in the risk of developing cancer. Checking with your primary care physician and having routine breast screening is highly recommended.

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