You may experience many changes to your breasts throughout your lifetime. While these changes may seem alarming, the important thing to remember is that most breast conditions are not cancer. Benign is another word for non-cancerous.
Although benign breast conditions are not life-threatening, they are common and can cause symptoms.
Common benign breast conditions include:
Certain benign growths, such as cysts and fibroadenomas may cause lumps in your breasts. Breast lumps may or may not be tender. Although most breast lumps are not cancer, you should have any lumps or changes in your breasts examined by your health care provider.
Breast pain is rarely associated with cancer, and in most cases will resolve on its own. Often breast tenderness can occur due to hormonal changes. We can work with you to treat your symptoms and address any related causes.
Most nipple discharge is caused by benign conditions, such as hormonal changes or duct blockages. Talk to your health care provider about your concerns and any further tests you may need.
In addition, if you have a family history of breast or ovarian cancer, we will work together to develop a plan to help you best monitor your breast health. This might require more frequent breast exams or imaging, or you may need a referral to our medical genetics experts.
Overall, if you notice any changes in your breasts, talk to your provider. Even if you are prone to benign breast conditions, if you notice something new, don’t hesitate to have it checked right away. Our entire team includes breast specialists who work together to offer you the most current technology and treatment available for any breast condition.
In cases where cancer is found, we can connect you to breast cancer services at the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute.