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Health Tip: Lumps in the Breast

Often don't signal cancer

(HealthDay News) -- If you detect a lump in your breast, it's very important to have a doctor examine it promptly.

Thankfully, an abnormal lump in the breast doesn't always mean breast cancer.

According to the University of Virginia Health System, a non-cancerous breast lump may result from:

  • A cyst, a small sac filled with fluid. These are common in women aged 35 to 50, particularly just before a menstrual period starts.
  • A fibroadenoma, a hard lump that is most often found in women in their late teens or early 20s. These lumps don't hurt, and move easily around in the breast.
  • A condition called fat necrosis, in which disintegrating fatty tissues form lumps. These can be caused by an injury to the breast, and may be common in women whose breasts are very large.
  • A painful condition called sclerosing adenosis, which involves extra tissue growth in the lobules. A biopsy may be needed to distinguish it from cancer.
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