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  • Writer's pictureTrista Yuen

Self-exam to prevent breast cancer

In 2019, breast cancer ranked first in the ranking of female incidence rates in Hong Kong. In the same year, the number of deaths among women suffering from breast cancer also ranked third, showing the threat that breast cancer poses to women's health.

Therefore, women should perform self-exams regularly to prevent breast cancer. By doing so, you can detect abnormal changes in your breasts and seek medical advice in time to increase chances of recovery.

The 2-3 days after menstrual period is the most suitable time for self-exams. You can stand in front of a mirror and observe whether there are abnormalities in your breasts, such as lumps, folds and nipple discharge. Then, you can lie flat on the bed, raise your arms above your head with your fingers close together, and gently press the inner and outer parts of your breasts in circular motions to feel whether there are lumps or other abnormalities in your breasts, armpits and nipples.

This self-exam is simple and easy to do, and such regular practice can help you understand the health of your breasts. Even if you find abnormalities, it is not necessarily breast cancer. It may be one of the following common diseases:

1. Fibrocystic breast changes

This is a common symptom before menopause. Fibrosis is a lump formed by cell tissue that makes you feel painful. About a quarter of the lump is actually a fluid-filled cyst. Early detection can be treated with medication. However, if it becomes an abscess due to inflammation, it must be drained and surgically removed through local anesthesia. Fibrocystic breast changes will not increase the risk of breast cancer in women.

2. Fibroadenoma

This is a common benign breast tumor. Whether it is young women or postmenopausal women, breast fibroadenomas may appear. Approximately 15% of fibroadenomas are complex, which may slightly increase the risk of breast cancer. Therefore, doctors usually recommend removal as soon as possible because it may even affect the shape of breasts.

3. Mastitis

Mastitis is one of the side effects of breastfeeding. It is usually caused by tearing of skin on nipples or blockage of mammary glands. The patient will not only feel pain, but also have fever. If it can't be cured by antibiotics, a biopsy should be performed to see if the patient has inflammatory breast cancer.

If you suffer from any gynecological diseases, it is very important to seek appropriate treatment in time. When choosing insurance products, you should pay attention to whether the coverage includes common gynecological diseases and the coverage amount, so as to reduce the medical expenses that you have to bear in the face of illness. For more details, feel free to contact our financial planning consultants.





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