Feeling worried about finding a lump in your breast? Many women have experienced that. However, it’s worth remembering that most lumps found in breasts aren’t cancerous. Still, just to be on the safe side, it’s best to call your doctor and have the lump checked out. Early detection in breast cancer is important in getting effective treatment. Knowing how to find and identify a lump in your breast is key, so keep reading to find that out so that you don’t miss anything potentially important to your health.

Pea-Sized Lump in Breast: What Should You Do?


First of All, Don’t Be Panic.

Remember, about 80 to 85 percent of pea-sized lumps in breast are benign, meaning they aren’t made of cancer cells. This is particularly true in women under the age of 40. Also if you’ve been having regular mammograms with negative results, it’s more likely that the lump you’re feeling is not cancerous. 

Noncancerous breast lump diseases include:

  • Fibroadenomas: Solid breast tumors that usually happen in teenage girls and women under age 30.

  • Fibrocystic breast disease: A condition where a woman has painful lumps in her breasts.

  • Ductal or lobular hyperplasia: An overgrowth of the cells that line the milk glands.

  • Cysts, abscesses, or infection: Sac-like structure that can be filled with fluid or pus.

  • Mastitis: An infection of the milk ducts.

  • Lipomas: A slow-growing, fatty lump that grows between the skin and the underlying muscle.

  • Intraductal papillomas: Benign tumor that forms in milk duct that’s common in women over 40.

  • Fat necrosis: When part of the fatty tissue of the breast is damaged from injury.

  • Duct ectasia: When the breast duct walls thicken, which can then get blocked and lead to fluid build-up.

  • Complex lesions or scars from past breast biopsies. 

Some of these diseases need no treatment, but some do need, so you may still want to pay a visit to your doctor for early diagnosis and treatment. 


Check Your Breasts Lumps Again.

Now you might be calm down and need to check the lumps again. Here are some self-examination tips:

  • Checking for lumps in the shower is great.

  • Place the pads your fingers near the nipple and move your fingers in a circular motion and keep moving outwards on the breast. Watch out for a pea-sized lump in the breast or pain.

  • Make sure you feel the entire breast, all the way from your sternum up to the collarbone and to the armpit.

  • Use light pressure when pushing on the tissue near the nipple. You can use more firm pressure to check the denser tissue near your ribs and armpit. Don’t forget to squeeze your nipples to check for any discharge, pain or lumps.

  • You can also do this same thing while lying down if needed.


Educate Yourself on What Is Not Normal.

Usually if a pea-sized lump in breast is cancerous, it will have these symptoms:

  • It is a hard mass.

  • It is not painful.

  • The edges aren’t smooth.

  • The mass doesn’t move when you push it.

  • It is in the outside and upper part of the breast.

  • It gets bigger over time.

Still, be sure that not every single cancerous lump in the breast will have these criteria. A lump that is cancerous could be rounded or soft and painful.

Many women also have very dense breast tissue that makes it more difficult to detect changes or lumps. It is even difficult to find lumps and tumors on mammograms in women with dense, thick breast tissue. If you examine yourself on a regular basis, it will be easier to find changes in your breast tissue.


Monitor for Other Signs of Breast Cancer.

There are other signs and symptoms of breast cancer other than feeling a pea-sized lump in breast. They are:

  • Swelling or change in color of the nipple or breast

  • Nipples going inward

  • Moles on the breast

  • Open sores on breast that won’t heal

  • Enlarged glands in the neck or under the armpits

  • Persistent cough

  • Change in appetite

  • Pain after eating and painful bowel movements

  • Blood in urine

  • Unexplained weight loss or weight gain

  • Fatigue

  • Night sweats

If you have any of these symptoms regardless of whether or not you have a pea-sized lump in your breast, see your doctor. These symptoms can be the result of any number of conditions that aren’t cancer. Your doctor can ask you questions and run tests to determine the cause of your symptoms.

What to Expect When Visiting Doctor

You can make an appointment with either your primary care doctor or your gynecologist. Explain your symptoms and how you found the pea-sized lump in breast. After hearing your symptoms, your doctor will likely order some tests or exams to check it out. These could include:

  • A thorough breast exam, which will be similar to a breast self-examination.

  • A mammogram, which is a x-ray of the breast and the most common test for breast cancer. If it looks like there’s an abnormality on the mammogram, your doctor could order further tests.

  • An ultrasound, which shows deeper structures within the breast tissue. This could help figure out of the lump is a solid mass or a fluid-filled mass.

  • A MRI, which shows the inside of the breast using dye and radio waves.

  • A biopsy, which is removing a sample of the tissue to definitively test for breast cancer. The tissue is sent to a lab to figure out if the cells are cancerous, and if they are, the stage and type of cancer is determined.

More tests and procedures will be used according to your condition. If you are free of cancer, congratulation, but remember to do regular self-examination; if breast cancer is the culprit, treatment below will be needed. 


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