Performing Breast Self-Exams

Dr. John Fritz operates a private practice in Jersey City. Through his Jersey City office, Dr. John Fritz advises patients of the significance of regularly undergoing routine health screening, including the importance of performing breast self-exams to check for signs of breast cancer.

Doctors recommend that women check for lumps in the breasts monthly, or more frequently. This allows a woman to become familiar with the breasts and therefore be able to quickly identify any changes that may occur. If the woman notices a change, such as a lump, she can then seek medical attention to determine whether the change presents a serious concern.

Doctors recommend that women perform breast self-exams in the shower by making circles across the surface of the breast with the fingers. The woman should identify areas of that seem to have thickened or have formed into a knot or lump.

Additionally, using a bathroom mirror to perform a visual self-examination is another good idea. A woman should examine her breasts with her arms held up and also down by her side, keeping an eye out for dimpling, swelling, and other changes. She should also look for differences in how the nipples look.

Finally, a woman should periodically perform a breast-self exam while lying down and with an arm stretched up by her head. She should make small circles with varying levels of pressure and then switch sides. A doctor can provide additional instructions and advice on how to perform these self-examinations.

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