ZocdocAnswersI just developed a lump on my breast a week ago. Is there a chance this could be malignant?

Question

I just developed a lump on my breast a week ago. Is there a chance this could be malignant?

The bump came up suddenly. It was a little painful. Now it's been over a week and its not going away. I'm very concerned. I am a 26 year old female with no history of breast cancer in my family. Is there a chance this could be something very serious?

Answer

The differential diagnosis for a new lump in the breast is very large and beyond the scope of this discussion. It is for this reason that it is recommended that you be evaluated by your ob/gyn because although there is a possibility that this lesion is benign, there is also the potential that this could be something concerning. Only your ob/gyn will be able to evaluate your medical history and presenting symptoms and decide upon the appropriate work up. This may include labs tests or imaging studies such as a mammogram. It is not clear whether you have a family history for breast disease, but they will likely discuss any close family members that have had breast cancer or other types of cancers, so be sure to get that information before you go, if you don't already know it. That fact that you found this lump is very good because it means that you are likely performing breast self examinations. This is a very good habit to continue, and should be done on a monthly basis. Your ob/gyn will be able to show you how to perform the entire breast exam on yourself so that you do not overlook any area.

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

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