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Is Back Pain A Symptom Of Breast Cancer

Your Boobs Look Really Veiny

What Type Of Cancer Causes Back Pain?

Being able to see your veins on the surface of your breasts depends on a lot of thingsskin color, amount of subcutaneous fat, pregnancy, geneticsbut you should be paying attention to those squiggly blue or green lines as changes in their appearance can be an early sign of breast cancer, Dr. Ross says.

Being veiny in general is nothing to be concerned about, but if youve never been able to see them before and now you can, or if theyve suddenly become much bigger, darker, or more prominent, then its time to be concerned. Visible veins can indicate the presence of a tumor as they require more blood flow and therefore more veins, she explains. Or the tumor may be blocking the blood flow, causing the veins nearby to swell.

You Notice Dimply Scaly Patchy Or Inflamed Skin

You know your boobs and all their little quirks so if you notice any changes to their normal appearance, pay attention, says Debra Patt, MD, OB-GYN, and breast cancer expert with Texas Oncology, a practice in the US Oncology Network.

“Any unusual thickening, redness, rash, dimpling, or puckering of your breast skin, or around the nipple, should be checked out by your doctor,” she explains.

Common Reasons Of Breast Pain

There are various reasons why someone may suffer from breast tenderness, pain or sore breast tissue. The pain may be cyclical breast pain, linked to the menstrual cycle and the associated hormonal changes or non-cyclical breast pain, unrelated to your periods.

Cyclical breast pain:

Usually impacts women aged in their 20s-40s. Premenstrual breast pain happens a few days before your period is due, with a mild to moderate pain in one or both breasts depending on the individual. Premenstrual and menstrual pain could go on for a week or longer each month, commencing before and continuing for the duration of the period. The pain can range from moderate to severe, impacting both breasts.

Cyclical breast pain:Usually impacts women aged in their 20s-40s. Premenstrual breast pain happens a few days before your period is due, with a mild to moderate pain in one or both breasts depending on the individual. Premenstrual and menstrual pain could go on for a week or longer each month, commencing before and continuing for the duration of the period. The pain can range from moderate to severe, impacting both breasts.

Non-cyclical breast pain:This type of breast pain is more uncommon and is not linked to the menstrual cycle. It is generally described as a burning, aching pain and usually impacts women in their 40s-50s. The pain is often in one area in one breast, commonly located in the inner part of the breast or under the nipple.

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Back Neck Shoulder Sprain Causing Breast Pain

Sprain in the body can also cause painful sensations in the breast. Having pain in any of the regions such as back, neck and shoulder also affects breast and leads to pain. Breast pain might also occur if there is problem in the distribution of nerves in the upper torso.

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If You Experience Pain Along With Any Of The Following Symptoms You Should Contact Your Physician

5 Warning Signs of Breast Cancer That Many Women Ignore ...
  • Bloody or clear discharge from your nipple
  • A new lump with the onset of the pain lump does not go away after your menstrual period
  • Persistent, unexplained breast pain
  • Signs of a breast infection, including local redness, pus, or fever
  • Redness of the skin of the breast that may appear as a rash, with dilated pores, and possibly skin thickening.

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When Back Pain Is A Symptom Of Lung Cancer

It is not uncommon for people to experience back pain with lung cancer or even to have back pain as their first symptom. While it may seem an unusual associationlinking the back to the lungsthere are defining features that are as telling as they are unique. Chief among them are the location and types of pain experienced, which may be quite different from your typical, chronic backache.

All told, around 25% of people with lung cancer will report back pain as a symptom at some point in their disease.

Verywell / Hugo Lin

When To See A Doctor

When unexplained back pain persists for a couple weeks despite rest and/or self-care, it is typically recommended to visit a doctor for a medical evaluation. Severe back pain that interferes with daily activities, or any back pain that is accompanied by red flag symptoms such as nausea or weight loss, requires an immediate medical evaluation. For people who currently have or previously had cancer, any new back pain needs to be evaluated by a doctor immediately.

It is also important to note that back pain rarely turns out to be cancer. Getting an accurate diagnosis for back pain from a medical professional is an important first step toward finding an effective treatment plan.

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Upper Back Shoulder And Neck Pain

Are you suffering from neck, back and shoulder pain regularly? If yes, then you should be alert. Because, in some women breast cancer is felt in the neck, back, and shoulders rather than in the chest or breast. For this reason, specialists check for the presence of tumors while treating chronic back pain that is unrelieved by physical therapy.

Coping With Worries About Recurrence

3 Ways to Ditch Your Breast Cancer Back Pain using Breast Cancer Rehabilitation

Nearly everyone who has been treated for cancer worries about it coming back.

At first, every ache or pain can frighten you. But, as time passes, you may come to accept minor symptoms for what they are in most cases warning signs of a cold or flu or the result of over-exerting yourself.

Some events may be particularly stressful the days or weeks leading up to your check-ups, the discovery that a friend or relative has been diagnosed with cancer or the news that someone you met while having treatment is ill again or has died.

We all cope with such anxieties in our own way and there are no easy answers. But keeping quiet about them and not wanting to bother anyone is probably not the best approach.

Just as talking about your diagnosis and treatment may have helped you through the early days, talking about your fears relating to recurrence may help you later on.

Breast Cancer Nows Forum lets you share your worries with other people in a similar situation to you.

You can also read our tips on coping with anxiety and find suggestions in BECCA, our free app that helps you move forward after breast cancer.

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How Does Breast Cancer Start

Breast cancer occurs when cells in the breast grow out of control. Different kinds of breast cells develop into different . Most breast cancers begin in the breast ducts or lobules . These are known respectively as invasive ductal carcinoma and invasive lobular carcinoma. Other less common types of breast cancer include inflammatory breast cancer and ductal carcinoma in situ.

Though breast cancer is most common in women, men can develop it as well. A mans lifetime risk of breast cancer is about 1 in 883. This year, the American Cancer Society estimates that about 2,620 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer.

Nipple Discharge Or Changes

One of the most common locations of breast cancer is beneath the nipple. The presence of a cancerous lesion may cause changes in appearance and sensitivity of the nipple. Different texture, color and shape might occur. The nipple may also feel much more tender and have an unusual texture. Some women describe a lack of sensitivity within the nipple, especially during intimate relations.

The American Cancer Society mentions nipple pain, nipple retraction and redness, scaliness or thickening of the nipple as possible signs of breast cancer.1 WebMD also mentions itching, a burning sensation, or ulceration in the nipple.3

A discharge of clear liquid, blood, or milk that doesnt happen during breast feeding might also be a sign of breast cancer. According to WebMD, unusual discharge from the nipple is usually caused by benign conditions, but may also indicate breast cancer in some cases, in which the discharge can be clear, bloody, or another color.3

This happens when a tumor forms in the milk duct on the nipple or behind it. When this happens the skin jostles to one side, allowing the tumor to cause irritation and inflammation that results in an unusual discharge from the nipple. Medical evaluation and followups are needed for early detection, but it is important to remember that many tumors are harmless.

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Early Signs Of Breast Cancer

Pinpointing breast cancer in its earliest stages isnt easy becauseare different for everyone. Sometimes there is a palpable lump or tenderness. Very often, there is neither. Generally, breast cancer shows no symptoms in the early stage.

However, there are certain changes in the breast that may indicate breast cancer in both men and women.

Whether you are a man or a woman, its important to become familiar with your breasts so you can recognize when changes occur and seek timely treatment. Know the facts and understand your risk factors for the disease, such as , by reviewing these frequently asked questions.

Change In Size Shape Or Feel Of Your Breast

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A cancer might cause your breast to look bigger or have a different shape than usual, it might feel different.

Many healthy women find that their breasts feel lumpy and tender just before their period.

It can help to be breast aware. This means getting to know the size, shape and feel of your breasts.

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Back Pain From Cancer

Rarely, it may be the first manifestation of cancer, says a paper in the Journal of General Internal Medicine .

The study authors point out that out of 1,975 walk-in patients at a clinic, only 13 were found to have cancer as a cause of their back pain.

Certain findings correlate to this, but these findings certainly dont automatically mean cancer:

At least 50 years of age

Previous history of cancer

Pain lasting longer than a month

No improvement with conservative therapy

Whats scary is that the paper says that metastatic cancer, when causing back pain, may not always cause other symptoms.

When cancer causes back pain, its more frequently in the lower region. Thus, pain specifically in the middle back, from this disease, would be even rarer.

Quite simply, pain in the back, be it low, middle or upper, has MANY causes including inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, gastroesophageal reflux disease , fibromyalgia, aortic disease, imminent heart attack, premenstrual syndrome, benign ovarian cysts and overdoing it in a yoga class.

Dr. Psallidas is the main author of many peer-reviewed publications and book chapters in pleural disease and lung cancer.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. Shes also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.
Top image: Freepik.com/ shayne_ch13

What Causes Breast Pain

There are a number of harmless causes for breast pain and tenderness that may primarily be related to changes in hormone levels. These can include:

  • Puberty in girls and sometimes for boys, too
  • Menstruation and premenstrual syndrome
  • Pregnancy more often during the first trimester
  • Days following childbirth as milk comes in Breastfeeding Mastitis, which is caused by a milk duct that is not properly draining and becomes infected, should be treated. It has no correlation with cancer, but it can become a serious infection if left untreated.
  • Menopause
  • A benign cyst

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Diagnosing Cancer And Back Pain

A doctor will consider your symptoms and medical history when diagnosing potential lower back pain causes. Its important to include if you have a history of cancer or a family history of cancer.

Because cancer is a rare cause of lower back pain in those who dont already have cancer, a doctor may recommend other treatments before doing a full cancer work-up.

However, if pain persists after physical therapy or anti-inflammatory medications, a doctor may order imaging studies and blood testing. These tests can help identify if there are potential cancer markers that are causing the lower back pain.

What Are The Chances Of Breast Cancer Returning

Is Breast Pain a Symptom of Cancer? | Breast Cancer

Each persons risk of breast cancer recurrence is different and depends on many factors, such as the size, type, grade and features of the cancer and whether the lymph nodes were affected.

Your treatment team can tell you more about your individual risk of recurrence if you want to know this.

The risk of breast cancer recurring is higher in the first few years and reduces as time goes on.

However, recurrence can happen even many years after treatment, which is why its important to be breast and body aware, and report any changes to your treatment team or GP.

In the UK, the number of people surviving breast cancer has risen greatly over the past decade and most people diagnosed with primary breast cancer will not have a recurrence.

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Your Nipples Have Changed

Only mannequins have perfect, pointy, well-behaved nipples. Real, human women have to deal with different colors and sizes, positions, textures, and hair.

Fortunately, all of these things are totally normal and not a problem as long as they’re your normal, says Dr. Denduluri. For example, if your nips have always been inverted, that’s just how you’re shaped, but if they change suddenly, going from pointy to fully or partially inverted, call your doctor stat. Bottom line: Any changes in your nipplesincluding their color and textureneed to be checked to rule out cancer, Dr. Denduluri says.

Oh, and BTW, hairy nipples on women have nothing to do with cancer and are totally normalone in three women have nipple hair, she adds.

How Is Breast Pain In Women Diagnosed

Your doctor will examine you, ask you to describe your pain, and the location of the pain. He or she may ask you about your health history. During the exam, your doctor will check to see if you have lumps in your breasts.

If youre younger than 30 and dont have a breast lump, your doctor might decide you dont need any tests. If youre older than 30 and dont have a breast lump, your doctor may still want you to get a mammogram and an ultrasound, if youre having pain in a specific area. If you do have a lump in your breast, your doctor might decide you need one or more of these tests:

  • A mammogram.This is a special X-ray of the breasts.
  • A breast ultrasound.This painless test uses sound waves to make a picture of the lump.
  • A breast biopsy. For this test, some tissue is surgically removed from your breast and looked at under a microscope. The area that is removed is numbed to eliminate pain. Its an outpatient procedure.

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Breast Pain Should Not Be Avoided Know These 10 Common Causes Leading To Breast Pain

Breast pain is very common and occurs because of variety of conditions. Here are 10 common conditions of breast pain you should know about.

Women of all ages go through similar kind of problems at a level. Almost all the women experience breast pain of some sort in their life which is caused by an underlying condition. This could be because of multiple reasons and degree of pain may also vary according to different problems. It also happens after the menopause and thus there is almost no escape from it. Breast pain needs to be diagnosed if it remains for longer duration and for that you need to know what all conditions can be responsible for causing breast pain. Today we will discuss about 10 common condition because of which breast pain occurs.

You Feel A Strange Tickling Sensation

Can Breast Cancer cause lower back pain?

How your breasts feel internally can be just as important as how they feel on the outside, says Sherry Ross, MD, an OB-GYN and author of She-ology. Some women report feeling a sensation almost like theyre being tickled from the inside, their breast feels like its buzzing or prickly inside, or like their breast milk is letting down , she says.

Weird feelings can happen for no reason at all but if youre experiencing strange sensations in your breast that are abnormal and recurring, its time to call your doc, she says.

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Can Inflammatory Breast Cancer Cause Back Pain

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What is the first sign of inflammatory breast cancer?

Early IBC symptoms may include persistent itching and the appearance of a rash or small irritation similar to an insect bite. The breast typically becomes red, swollen, and warm. The skin may appear pitted like an orange peel, and nipple changes such as inversion, flattening, or dimpling may occur.

The Breast Cancer Centers At Ctca

At the Breast Cancer Centers at each of our CTCA® hospitals, located across the nation, our cancer experts are devoted to a single missiontreating breast cancer patients with compassion and precision. Each patients care team is led by a medical oncologist and coordinated by a registered oncology nurse, who helps track the various appointments, follow up on tests and answer questions that come up along the way. Your care team also may include a breast surgeon, radiation oncologist, radiologist, pathologist and a plastic and reconstructive surgeon with advanced training in helping patients restore function and appearance. Fertility preservation and genetic testing are also available for qualifying patients who need them.

Our pathologists and oncologists are experienced and trained in tools designed to diagnose, stage and treat different types of breast cancer, from early-stage ductal carcinoma in situ to complex diseases such as triple-negative and inflammatory breast cancer. As part of our patient-centered care model, which is designed to help you keep strong during treatment, your multidisciplinary care team may recommend various evidence-informed supportive therapies, such as naturopathic support, psychosocial support, nutritional support, physical and occupational therapy and pain management. The entire team works together with a whole-person focus, which is at the heart of our centers dedication to personalized and comprehensive care.

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