Healthcare Information

Breast Self Exam

Breast cancer is one of the most common form of cancers found in women. In its early stages, it is neither painful nor causes any discomfort, usually presenting as a painless breast lump. Examining one's own breasts every month is the best method to detect early breast cancer. 90% of breast cancers are discovered by women themselves.

The best time to do a Breast Self Examination is 3 or 4 days after your period ends. If you no longer menstruate, pick a day, such as the first day of the month to do Breast Self Examination.

    STEP 1
Undress to the waist in front of the mirror and look for any unusual appearance of the breasts and any changes in size or shape. Look also for any dimpling or puckering of the skin, and for any changes in the outline of the breasts.



    STEP 2
Rest palms on hips and press down firmly to flex your chest muscles.





    STEP 3
Raise up both arms, examine your breasts from different angles. Check the nipples too for any signs of discharge or bleeding.





    STEP 4
Lie down and put a pillow under your right shoulder. Place your right arm behind your head. Start examining your right breast using your left hand.




(A)
    STEP 5

Press gently but firmly, looking for any lump or thickening or anything unusual.

Move around the breast in a set way. You can choose either the circle(A), the up and down line(B). Do it the same way every time. It will help you to make sure that you have gone over the entire breast area, and to remember how your breast feels.

Note: Use the FINGER PADS of your THREE MIDDLE FINGERS on your left hand to feel for LUMPS or THICKENING. Your finger pads are the TOP THIRD of each finger.


(B)
    STEP 6
Use the flat part of your fingers to feel under your armpit. Search for lumps or swellings.

    STEP 7
Now examine your left breast using right hand finger pads.

    STEP 8
If you find any changes, see your doctor right away.

BREAST CANCER SUPPORT GROUP, HOSPITAL LAM WAH EE
For more information, please contact:
Ms Cheah Gim Hoon, Nursing College, HLWE Tel: 04 652 8874 or 016 451 4413
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