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Doctor insights on: Benign Vs Malignant Breast Lumps

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How do I know if breast lumps are benign or malignant?

How do I know if breast lumps are benign or malignant?

See a doctor: By yourself, you cannot tell if a breast lump is benign or not. Is it new or changing? Painful or not? You really must see a doctor for a physical examination & likely mammogram and/or breast ultrasound. Do not try to guess yourself without a doctor's exam. ...Read more

Malignant (Definition)

The term “malignant” is mainly used in the context of cancer, but can also be used to describe a condition that can be acutely damaging to the body, ...Read more


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Are there any non-malignant (benign) breast tumours/lumps that grow with time?

Are there any non-malignant (benign) breast tumours/lumps that grow with time?

Yes: Benign tumors do in fact grow but rather slowly, compared to malignant tumors. The main difference is that benign tumors will not kill you. If left untrated malignant tumors will eventualy kill you some sooner and others a little later. How fast they grow will determine how soon. Hope that helps you ...Read more

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Are there any non-malignant (benign) breast tumours/lumps that grow with time? What do they feel like?

Are there any non-malignant (benign) breast tumours/lumps that grow with time? What do they feel like?

Yes: However, they do not have any particular consistency that reliably identify them. Definite lumps, whether palpated or identified on any of the breast studies should usually be biopsied. Lumps that grow quickly and are sensitive may be only cysts and can be drained if necessary. ...Read more

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Will a benign breast lump become malignant or cancerous?

Will a benign breast lump become malignant or cancerous?

It depends: There are many different kinds of benign tumors in the breast.

Hyperplasia, dysplasia, dcis and lcis are known to progress to cancer.

It is more rare with other benign lumps. ...Read more

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My right breast is swelling rapidly. It is hot to the touch. Should I go to the er mammo and US this week lump found undetermined benign or malignant?

My right breast is swelling rapidly. It is hot to the touch. Should I go to the er mammo and US this week lump found undetermined benign or malignant?

Needs Medical check: Any swelling of the breast requires a medical consultation and examination as soon as possible. ER is not a good place to seek attention unless you have fever (implies infection). Any lump in the breast or the armpit requires biopsy to determine the cause unless it appears to be infection in which case antibiotics would be used first and biopsy done only after the infection has been treated adequ ...Read more

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Are malignant breast lumps usually movable?

Are malignant breast lumps usually movable?

Yes: While the "classic" description of a breast cancer is "fixed" and "immovable", I have found many palpable breast cancers to be movable within the breast. The bottom line is that when a woman finds a new lump in her breast, she should seek out medical attention for further evaluation regardless of its mobility within the breast. ...Read more

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What does a malignant breast lump feel like?

What does a malignant breast lump feel like?

Varies: Many small breast cancers cannot be felt on a physical exam. Larger cancers can be a new, firm, hard, painless breast lump. Can be very hard to tell yourself ; any breast lumps need to be evaluated by a physician ; mammogram. ...Read more

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What are the chances of a malignant breast lump decreasing?

What are the chances of a malignant breast lump decreasing?

Biopsy?: Have you had a biopsy and been diagnosed with cancer? Cancerous lumps do not decrease, as my collegue replied in his answer.
You could have a fluid filled cyst in the breast that can decrease in size and often times disappear altogether.
I recommend you get evaluated by a physician to get a correct answer and diagnose your problem. Good luck! ...Read more

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What are the manifestations/symptoms if you have a malignant breast lump?

What are the manifestations/symptoms if you have a malignant breast lump?

Breast CA Symptoms: Most women diagnosed with breast cancer have no symptoms, having been diagnosed by routine screening mammography. For those with symptoms, the presence of a palpable lump is by far the most common. Other symptoms include skin dimpling, thickening, or redness, nipple inversion, nipple discharge, breat pain, and/or the presence of a lump in the armpit. Best bet for diagnosis: yearly mammograms! ...Read more

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How can I tell if a breast lump is malignant or not?

How can I tell if a breast lump is malignant or not?

Evaluation: The only way to tell is to have it evaluated. This could include mammogram, ultrasound, needle biopsy, or surgical biopsy. ...Read more

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I'm 46 and had a core biopsy for a large breast lump. The diagnosis was fibroadenoma. Will it ever turn malignant?

I'm 46 and had a core biopsy for a large breast lump. The diagnosis was fibroadenoma. Will it ever turn malignant?

NO: Generally fibroadenomas are benign tumors that predcominantly occur in younger females of childbearing age. In and of themselves, they do not transform into malignant lesions. This is determined by other factors such as family history, genetic testing, calcfications, cellular atypia, etc. That will be a part of a complete hsitory and physical examination, . ...Read more

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Went for a biopsy for lump under breast doctor called said it has or shows A+ cells they aren't sure if malignant or not I'm very scared?

Went for a biopsy for lump under breast doctor called said it has or shows A+ cells they aren't sure if malignant or not I'm very scared?

Pathology report: Talk to the MD who did the biopsy during a Consultation and ask him/her to give you a laymen's explanation of the Pathology report as well as a copy of the same. If you don't like the explanation, then see a 2nd MD with the copy of the Pathology report and get a 2nd opinion. ...Read more

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Medical professional, please tell me if I could have malignant tumor if I have a big sore lump in my breast. Also what could save my life?

See MD-ASAP: You should see your md asap! . This big sore lump could be malignant vs non malignant condition (abscess etc). Any palpable breast lump - cancer should be ruled out. See your md immediately- so then you can have a proper evaluation and further testing- mammogram/sonogram and ultimately biopsy to establish a diagnosis. The treatment will depend on the cause- off course. Don't delay anymore- see md. ...Read more

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Lump between breasts, history of melanoma, malignant mole removed from directly across the location of the lump. Any chance it's just a cyst?

Lump between breasts, history of melanoma, malignant mole removed from directly across the location of the lump. Any chance it's just a cyst?

Wrong question: Please forgive my frankness. The only question you need to ask is, "Could it be CANCER? " With your cancer history, and the fact that this is a dominant mass where there's possibly breast tissue, you need to get seen. Period. Pick up the phone now. To be brave, act brave. We'll be thinking of you, and if it's benign / nothing / a lipoma / a cyst, you're a stronger and more skilled person. ...Read more

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What are common types of benign (non-cancerous) breast lumps?

What are common types of benign (non-cancerous) breast lumps?

Cysts, fibroadenomas: Cysts and fibroadenomas are the most common benign lumps. But if someone feels a lump it is best to see a breast disease specialist and get a mammogram and a directed ultrasound of the lump. It is not possible to determine what it is based on size, how it feels, and age of person. ...Read more

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How can you distinguish between benign and malignant breast tumors?

After bx: On examination a true lesion in a women past 40 yrs of age, when fibroadenomas don't present denovo, will feel like a firm lump when pt. Examined with hand behind side being examined. This in distinction to fibrocytic changes that are soft and diffuse. On mammo the lesion appears as a stellate mass, May be associated with skin dimpling. Bx definitive for diagnosis. ...Read more

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Why do benign breast lumps need a close clinical follow-up?

Why do benign breast lumps need a close clinical follow-up?

Important: Most breast cysts are benign, however some can mask other problems so they need to be monitored to asses for changes. Solid lumps likewise are largely benign, but they are more likely than cysts to develop into something more worrisome ...Read more

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Can benign breast lumps cause the shape of your breast to change? Can it still be benign if shape changes occur?

Benign breast issue: If they are large enough, benign breast lumps can change your breast shape. Even if shape changes occur that does not necessarily mean that the lump is cancerous. ...Read more

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How can you distinguish between a benign and malignant breast mass?

How can you distinguish between a benign and malignant breast mass?

Clinical: Evaluation and imaging studies (mammogram, ultrasound, MRI) help assess whether a mass needs biopsy for definitive diagnosis. Sometimes certain imaging features are specific for a benign cause (for example hamartoma, calcified fibroadenoma, or oil cyst). Other times, imaging features can estimate the probability of malignancy and help indicate what follow-up is needed. ...Read more

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Are all lumps in the breast diagnosed as cancer? Can some lumps be benign?

Are all lumps in the breast diagnosed as cancer? Can some lumps be benign?

Breast lumps: Not all breast lumps or masses are malignant. Breast lumps/masses should be evaluated by a doctor and biopsied, if necessary, to see what they are and treat them accordingly. ...Read more

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Can you see the difference between benign and malignant breast lesions by ultrasound?

Can you see the difference between benign and malignant breast lesions by ultrasound?

Not definitely: There are suggestive ultrasound finding to try to distinguish between benign and malignant lesions. If a nodule shows up as a simple cyst then it is almost certainly benign. Solid nodules that measure higher than they are wide tend to malignant. The only definite way to tell is to get a biopsy. ...Read more

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Age 30- fibrocystic breasts. How can doctor tell by just feeling that lumps are benign?

Age 30- fibrocystic breasts. How can doctor tell by just feeling that lumps are benign?

Mammogram better.: Hello,
Yes a physician can have an impression of a benign breast vs. A malignancy. However, Mammogram would have a greater more definite screening than manual exam alone. Also the breast, if fibrocystic may interfere with what we can feel with our hands. The patient also has an impression about her own body and is a reliable source in determining a change in the nature of the breast tissue. ...Read more

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S having multiple lumps found in your breast and arm pit a cause concern even if they keep coming back benign...?

S having multiple lumps found in your breast and arm pit a cause concern even if they keep coming back benign...?

Possibly: The critical detail in my opinion is whether the benign diagnosis explains the multiple lumps in your breast and armpit. I agree with what has been stated in that just because one lump is benign, does not mean the others are, as well. Clinical, radiographic and pathologic correlation of all findings is mandatory. ...Read more

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Could benign breast lumps attach to skin or muscle?

Could benign breast lumps attach to skin or muscle?

Unlikely: Infiltration of skin and deep muscle is a sign of advanced breast cancer as is involvement of lymph nodes. ...Read more

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Is the % of malignant microcalcifications in female breast age related? Benign more often in under 40 or over 40?

Is the % of malignant microcalcifications in female breast age related? Benign more often in under 40 or over 40?

Microcalcifications: Breast microcalcifications are very common. Age is not so much a predictor of benign versus malignant. More important is whether they are "clustered" and how they behave over time. It would be common to recommend a repeat imaging in 6 months to "demonstrate stability". New clustered microcalcifications are more concerning. ...Read more

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Can the benign tumor in breast become malignant if left untreated?

Can the benign tumor in breast become malignant if left untreated?

Possible: It's possible, but either way, it need to be evaluated and at least followed by your MD. ...Read more

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Is it possible to have a benign tumor and malignant tumor in one breast?

Is it possible to have a benign tumor and malignant tumor in one breast?

Yes: One type of tumor does not exclude the other type and both can occur in the same breast. ...Read more

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Is it possible for some benign breast lumps to appear before menstrual cycle and disappear during or afterwards?

Absolutely: Benign fibrocystic tissue in the breast cycles with you menses and can feel like a lump in the breast that goes away after your period. Some breast cysts are cyclical as well. See your doctor for a breast exam to confirm that this is benign tissue and not something else. ...Read more