The term breast lumps refers to any bulges or growths in the breast tissues. There are many different types of lumps that can form in or on your breasts and depending on the type, they may feel like a hardened mass, a localized swelling, or a sense of fullness in your breasts. Since all of these lumps mean different things, their treatment varies. It is important to note that all breast lumps do not necessarily mean that you have breast cancer, and it’s vital not to panic. Have your doctor look at them immediately so that you can begin treatment.
There are various treatment options for breast lumps and they all depend on why the lump has formed in the first place. If you are currently breast feeding, your lump may be the result of mastitis, which is an infection that occurs in the breast in lactating women. If this is the case, your treatment will consist of antibiotics. If your lump is caused due to an injury or trauma to the breasts, then a combination of pain relievers and ointments to soothe the tissue will be used to treat you. Some breast lumps are essential cysts or lipomas (which are doughy masses that are harmless). In this case, the treatment is optional as they do not harm you or impact your health. You can have them removed through surgery or leave them as is.
Breast lumps can also be a sign of cancer. In this case, the treatment will involve removing the lump or breasts entirely, chemotherapy, radiation, and surgeries, depending on how far the cancer has progressed.
Once you notice or feel a lump in your breast, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. Your doctor will begin by performing a physical exam of your breasts to gauge the size and hardness of the lumps, how much pain you are in, and any other reactions your breasts may be having. In order to gain a deeper understanding, the doctor will also order a mammogram test and an ultrasound so that any problems with the tissues can be spotted. In some cases, a chest MRI may also be required for the diagnosis. Once the reason for the lumps is diagnosed, the treatment can begin.
If the breast lumps are a result of an infection, you will be put on a course of antibiotics until the infection clears and the lump goes away. Breast infections are commonly, especially in women who are lactating or are pregnant. In case of an injury, the main line of treatment will be to heal the damaged tissue in your breasts. Ointments that penetrate the skin deeply and work on muscular injuries will be prescribed, along with pain relievers, if necessary. More of than not, these will be over the counter medications, unless your doctor prescribes something with steroids.
Benign cysts and growths can be removed with the help of surgery. Since they are not harmful, their removal is generally an aesthetic or cosmetic procedure and not really a health care one. Sometimes, these surgeries can be performed under local anaesthesia if the growth can be removed quickly.
Unfortunately, breast lumps can also be indicative of breast cancer. Here, the treatment involves chemotherapy and radiation, and maybe even a mastectomy if needed. It depends mostly on how far the cancer has grown.
The minute you feel a mass or lump in your breast, it is important to get a check up to confirm if everything is alright.
If you are suffering from an underlying condition that is causing you breast pain and lumps, it is important to treat that condition and not just the lump itself. In this case, you are not eligible for the treatment of breast lumps.
There are no specific post treatment guidelines.
The recovery period depends on the reason behind the lumps occurring. Infections can be cleared within a few days. It can take a minimum of 2 weeks to fully recover from the effects of any surgery on your breasts to help remove cysts or growths. Cancer can take months and years to go into remission and can come back any time.
Chemotherapy can cost up to Rs 57,000 – Rs 60,000 per session.
Cancer can go into remission but can also come back at any time.
There are no alternatives to the treatment.