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Breast cancer is a form of cancer which develops from the breast tissue. Breast cancer is indicated by signs such as a lump in the breast, changes in breast shape, fluid flowing from the nipple, dimpling of skin, or the development of red scaly patches. Breast cancer is a fatal form of cancer in women and immediate diagnosis is required on observing the symptoms.
Diagnosis of breast cancer
Other than the regular breast screening, the diagnosis of breast cancer involves the following steps and methods:
- Seeing your general practitioner (GP): It is very important to visit your GP soon after noticing the symptoms of breast cancer. Your GP will examine you properly and in case your symptoms need more assessment, he/she will refer you to a breast cancer clinic.
- Mammogram and breast ultrasound: You will be required to have a mammogram, as recommended by a specialist breast unit. This is an X-ray of the breasts. An ultrasound scan may also be required. Breast ultrasound should be undertaken only if you are less than 35 years of age. This is because, young women have denser breasts and a mammogram is not as effective as ultrasound in the diagnosis of breast cancer. In ultrasound, high frequency sound waves are used for obtaining an image of your breasts. It is observed to notice any abnormality or lumps. A breast ultrasound is also important for determining whether a lump is solid or contains liquid.
- Biopsy: In this diagnosis process, a sample of the tissue cells is taken from the breasts and tested under a microscope to find out if it is cancerous. A scan and needle test for the lymph nodes present in your armpit is also done to check whether they have also been affected. A biopsy is undertaken in several ways, depending upon the condition and severity. A needle aspiration biopsy is used for testing a sample of your breast cells without the removal of the tissues. This is the most common form of biopsy and it is also used for draining a small fluid-filled lump or benign cyst. During the process, you will be given a local anesthetic. Usually, a needle biopsy is carried out guided by an X-ray, ultrasound and an MRI scan as well. This helps in distinguishing it from non-invasive changes such as ductal carcinoma in situ.
Another form of biopsy used for the diagnosis of breast cancer is called vacuum assisted biopsy or mammotome biopsy. In this process, a needle gets attached to a suction tube, which helps in obtaining the sample and for clearing the bleeding. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
My hba1c is 8.6 and average blood sugar is 200. I am male 63 years. I have problems in L4 & L5. What exercise I should do as doctor bars to do rotator and step up exercise. My weight is 92 kg and my height is 170 cm. My lipid is OK. Please help.
Hi I am Dr. Kirti Yadav, senior physiotherapist from Mat-Harbor family clinic, Gurgaon.
Today I want to talk about a very common problem which every one, if we count about the population 100% then 70% of people they talk about Disk pain. So I want to enlighten this topic today. If there is a normal pain and ache in your neck or back you go to a doctor and the doctor assess you and tells you to get an MRI done. Whenever you get an MRI done there is some level of disk involvement and the doctor ask you to take rest, not to do exercise and all those things and then just being fear of disk pain you don’t exercise for the rest of your life.
So just to come onto that area, just to enlighten this topic, as a physiotherapist I want to tell you about the fact. Disk pain, YES it happens but it happens in 20% of the cases. The rest 50% of the cases have been misdiagnose, they take disk pain and they don’t do exercise all of their life. Now we don’t exercise, we don’t strengthen up our muscle that is the problem that we get these pains and aches and the muscle is being stretched which is counted to be as the disk pain. Now when we talk about this, when you get an MRI done even today if I get my MRI done I will have some level of disk involvement whether the disk is causing you pain or not that is more important. The nature of pain tells you about the disk involvement.
So if you have tingling sharp shooting burning kind of pain which travels through a nerve, which travels through area, it dignifies, it signifies the disk pain. But if you have a localized dull, aching kind of pain please don’t take it as a disk pain and don’t take it as a nerve pain. So just coming to the treatment part. About 50% of the people who don’t have disk pain, who says we have cervical spondylitis but they don’t have cervical spondylitis they have trapezius muscle involvement. In that case what we do please strengthen up your trapezius muscle, please strengthen up your shoulder muscle so that you don’t have these pains and aches again and again. Why this happens? This happens because of repetitive strain injuries that happens because of more of computer use more of mobile use, texting and other sedentary live cells which we are going in. So the ultimate solution for pains and aches muscular is strengthening the particular part.
If you want to know more about this, if you want to talk more about it you can contact me through Lybrate.
Breast Cancer can be detected at various stages. Some women might feel a difference in their breast area, with a lump or kind of a skin rash around the nipple or they could see that their nipple has become inverted, so then the treatment procedures would be different. The different stages of cancer and their respective treatment procedures are discussed below:
Stage I Breast Cancer - Treatment
In this case, breast cancers are at their nascent stage, either they have not spread to the lymph nodes or might have spread to only a small area. Treatment options are as follows:
- Surgery: The main treatment for breast cancer in stage I is surgery. These types of cancers get treatment with either breast-conserving surgery or mastectomy. There are some cases when breast reconstruction can also be done along with the surgery to get rid of cancer.
- Radiation therapy: When doctors feel the need to do a breast construction surgery, then radiation therapy is normally given after surgery. This helps in lowering the chance of cancer getting relapsed. Older women, aged close to 70 years, should go for breast reconstruction surgery without radiation therapy, provided the following conditions are true:
- The lump was 2cm or less across and it has been completely removed.
- None of the lymph nodes removed contained cancer.
- The cancer is either ER or PR-positive and hormone therapy is conducted.
- Chemotherapy and other drugs: Women who have either ER or PR-positive hormone receptor, doctors would recommend them to go for hormone therapy. The therapy is given for 5 years. In case the tumor is larger than 1cm across, adjuvant chemotherapy is recommended.
Stage II Breast Cancer-Treatment
This is the stage when cancer has spread to some nearby lymph nodes. The treatment methods followed are:
- Surgery and radiation therapy: This second stage of cancer gets treated with breast-conserving surgery or mastectomy. The lymph nodes nearby get checked either with a sentinel lymph node biopsy or an axillary lymph node dissection. Women, on whom BCS have been conducted, get treated with radiation therapy after surgery.
- Neoadjuvant and adjuvant systemic therapy: This is another method followed for treating stage II cancer. It is a good option for women with large tumors as they shrink the tumor before conducting surgery. Chemotherapy, HER2 targeted drugs and Hormone therapy all form part of treatment in this stage II.
Stage III Breast Cancer – Treatment
In stage III breast cancer, the size of a tumor is more than 5 cm, with cancer spreading on to the nearby lymph nodes. The treatment procedures followed are:
- Neoadjuvant therapy: Generally the stage III cancers are treated with neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Radiation therapy is also given after surgery, followed by breast reconstruction surgery.
- Starting off with surgery: Another treatment option for this stage is to get started off with surgery. The tumors are quite large and they even grow on to nearby tissues, which means women need to get a mastectomy. Women having large breasts can even go for Breast Reconstruction Surgery, in case cancer has not spread on to the nearby tissues.
In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
I have diagnosed with infiltrating ductal carcinoma, NOS, in right breast (in biopsy report, triple negative (ER-negative, PR-NEGATIVE, HER 2-NEGATIVE). The tumor measures 4 cm* 3 cm mammographically. After giving 3 no. Of chemo My doctor suggest me for modified radical mastectomy. Please tell me if I go for complete breast removal & subsequent chemotherapy Radiotherapy is must or optional?
MRI findings are suggestive of disc desiccation with posterior disc protrusion at L4-L5 and L5-S1 levels. More severe at L5-S1 level. This is my MRI report says, is there anything to worry about it. Please tell me what should I do in this condition.In the initial days I had lower back pain and pain in both knees also but the pain is decreasing day by day.
Many women develop uterine fibroids by the time they hit the age of 50 years and above. These are non-cancerous growths that may occur in the uterus. Most women go through severe bleeding and pain as well as discomfort as a result of these fibroids. Age, family history of the same condition, obesity or being overweight, eating habits and even ethnicity play a large role in deciding the risk of each individual patient. These fibroids can grow in the submucosal, intramural and subserosal areas.
Following are the common side effects of uterine fibroids:
- Frequent urination: Due to the pressure of the fibroids on the uterus, the patient may experience a constant feeling of fullness in the lower pelvic area of the body, which may lead to frequent filling of the bladder. This gives rise to frequent trips to the washroom for urination.
- Heavy Bleeding: Severe bleeding is one of the most common causes of the presence of these kinds of fibroids. The patient may experience a lot of bleeding during menstrual periods, as well as pain and cramps the rest of the time. The periods will also be very painful when there are fibroids in the uterus or the uterine lining.
- Painful Intercourse: It is a well-known fact that any kind of infection or growth as well as sores and other such ailments can lead to vaginal dryness as well as pain during sexual intercourse. This is true for uterine fibroids as well, which can lead to severe pain during sexual activity. These fibroids can also give rise to pain in the lumbar or lower back region.
- Abdomen Swelling: The abdomen may go through significant swelling in such a condition and the patient may even look like she is pregnant. The growth can push the shape of the abdomen outwards and create a full feeling.
- Pregnancy Complications: The presence of uterine fibroids can give rise to several complications during pregnancy and even after child birth. One of the most common problems in this case is bleeding, followed by more severe outcomes like miscarriage. The women suffering from uterine fibroids are at greater risk of undergoing a caesarean section for the delivery of the baby. The baby may also be born breech and a premature delivery may take place.
- Infertility: This is also a rare side effect of the uterine fibroids and is generally seen only in very severe cases.
- Cancer: Only one in every 1000 cases might transform into malignant tumours. These uterine fibroids are generally known to be non-malignant.
Any symptoms must be reported to a gynaecologist at the earliest to avoid any serious complications. In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!
Dear sir, my age is 36 years I have hypothyroid and using 75 mg tablets, recently I have taken mri the report is: posterior disc osteophytes at multiple levels, causing bilateral moderate neural foramen encroachment at C5-6 level, bilateral minimal neural foramen encroachment at 6-7 level. C 5 -6 disc disc shows posterior protrusion along with osteophytes causing bilateral moderate neural foramen encroachment. C6- 7 disc shows bilateral paracentral protrusion along with osteophytes causing mild thecal sac impingement and bilateral minimal neural foramen encroachment. Please tell me what is the problem and what care I have to take.
Dilation and curettage procedure which is commonly referred to as D&C is a minor surgical procedure where the cervix is dilated while a special instrument is used for scraping out the lining of the uterus. It is important to know what you can expect before, after and during the process so that you can stay ahead of unnecessary worries and help the process to be smooth and fruitful.
When do doctors recommend dilation and curettage process?
You may be required to undergo the dilation and curettage procedure for one of many reasons. It can be used for removal of tissues in the uterus during or after an abortion or miscarriage or to remove little pieces of placenta after delivery. This process aids in preventing infection as well as heavy bleeding. On the other hand, it can help in diagnosing and treating abnormal uterine bleeding including polyps, fibroids, hormonal imbalances and even uterine cancer. A sample of the tissues in the uterus is tested under a microscope to check if there is any abnormal cell present.
What can you expect during the dilation and curettage process?
The D&C procedure is a minor one and takes about 15 minutes even though you will have to spend about 4 to 5 hours in the healthcare facility. Before the procedure, your doctor would check complete history, and at this point, you should tell your doctor if you suspect that you are pregnant, you are sensitive to latex or any medicines or if you have a history of bleeding disorders. You will then be given anesthesia so that you don’t feel any pain or discomfort during the procedure. Before this procedure, you will have to empty your bladder.
The D&C procedure comprises two main steps, dilation, and curettage.
Dilation involves opening of the lower part of the uterus or the cervix for allowing insertion of a slender rod. This is done to soften the cervix so that it opens and allows curettage to be performed. Curettage involves scraping of the lining and removal of the uterine contents with the help of a spoon-like instrument known as a curette. This may cause some amount of cramping, and a tissue sample would be taken out for examination in the laboratory.
After the completion of the procedure, you may experience slight bleeding and cramping. In some rare cases, adhesions or scar tissues may start forming inside the uterus, and this condition is termed as Asherman’s syndrome which can cause changes in the menstrual cycle along with infertility. This problem, if arises, can be solved with the help of surgery and therefore, you should report any abnormality in your menstrual cycle to your doctor. Consult an expert & get answers to your questions!