ZocdocAnswersFor the past few years I have noticed bumps and peeling on my nipples. Could this be breast cancer?

Question

For the past few years I have noticed bumps and peeling on my nipples. Could this be breast cancer?

For the past few years I have noticed bumps and peeling on my nipples. Could this be breast cancer?

Answer

These symptoms do not sound like breast cancer, though there is no way for me to be sure. That is why the best thing to do is to schedule an appointment with your primary care physician. The typical symptoms or problems that women have with her nipples when they're developing breast cancer are nipple inversion. Small bumps or skin peeling of the nipples is not really a typical presentation for breast cancer. Some women also experience some clear or bloody discharge in the breast affected by breast cancer. The fact that you describe your symptoms as both sides also suggests that this is not breast-cancer as it is quite unusual for breast cancer develop in both breasts at the same time. With that said, if you are over the age of 40, than most physicians will recommend that she begin breast cancer screening. Typical breast cancer screening includes getting a mammogram every year or every other year. Some doctors will recommend that you start getting screened at age 50 as the exact time when you should start is controversial and somewhat dependent on your family history. If you are under the age of 40 then the only recommended screening process assuming that you do not have a strong family history of breast cancer is yearly physical exams to look for abnormalities in the breast. For the screening, I suggest that you schedule an appointment with your primary care physician. The two of you can discuss what screening techniques your doctor recommends at your age and with your personal and family history.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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