WEST VIRGINIA (WOAY) – In light of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center is making it known that not all breast cancer begins with a lump.
Researchers there found that most women are unaware of the more unusual symptoms that come from Inflammatory Breast Cancer, a more aggressive and deadly form of the disease.
“Patients are not often aware that what they are experiencing may be a sign or a symptom of Inflammatory Breast Cancer, and even in the medical community physicians and providers are not used to thinking about red breast as a sign associated with inflammatory breast cancer because it is such a rare disease,” says Surgical Oncology MD at Ohio State University Cancer Center, Dr. Clara Park.
The study found that less than half of women are able to detect the signs of this type of breast cancer.
Along with redness in the breast, these symptoms can include thickening of the skin, and one breast feeling warmer or heavier.
The symptoms, as well as the detection of this kind of breast cancer, can be misleading, so it’s crucial to see a doctor right away if such signs persist.
“The mammogram or ultrasound may not show an obvious target to biopsy, which can also lead to delay in diagnosis, which leads to the idea of using a more sensitive exam like a breast MRI to help with the diagnosis,” Park says.
According to the study, nearly 4 in 5 women recognize these signs, as often they can be mistaken for an infection.