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  • Writer's pictureOren Zarif

Pregnancy and Breast Cancer Symptoms - Oren Zarif - Pregnancy and Breast Cancer


Are you worried about the potential links between breast cancer and pregnancy? If you suspect that you may be pregnant, you should visit your GP to determine if you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above. The GP can recommend an ultrasound scan to confirm the diagnosis. An ultrasound scan uses sound waves to produce an image of the breast. While the ultrasound will not affect the unborn baby, shielding is used to minimize any radiation exposure.

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Women who are 30 or older at the time of conception are at higher risk of developing breast cancer, although the actual risk is less than one in 1,000. Pregnancy and breast cancer symptoms are not dissimilar from those of non-pregnant women. Pregnancy-related changes to the breast may be harder to spot because of the normal pregnancy symptoms. However, if you notice dimpling or scaly skin on your breast or an unusual thickening in a specific area, it's worth seeing a doctor.

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Because of the complex relationship between pregnancy and breast cancer, it's important to be aware of the signs of the disease. Breasts are undergoing amazing changes during pregnancy. They often double in size and become heavy from the extra fluid. Their tissue feels firmer and "lumpy bumpy" during pregnancy. Because of these changes, it is sometimes difficult to detect breast cancer. However, there have been several small studies conducted to determine if mammography is safe to use during pregnancy.

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Early stage breast cancer may be easily removed by lumpectomy or mastectomy. During the mastectomy, the surgeon will examine the lymph nodes and remove any cancerous growths. If cancer has spread to nearby organs and tissues, the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. In cases of advanced stages, treatment may be more complicated. Often, a woman's treatment will include chemotherapy. The cancer cells will not spread to the baby.

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Some women delay their treatment because they are pregnant. However, if the cancer is detected in the second or third trimester, it is possible to postpone the treatment until after delivery. If cancer is detected earlier in the pregnancy, it's not a problem. Alternatively, doctors may decide to induce early labor. However, some women may need to discuss whether or not to continue the pregnancy. Even with a pregnancy-threatening diagnosis, early treatment is the safer option.

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Those who wish to have another baby are strongly encouraged to discuss their options with their doctors. While breast cancer treatment may interfere with fertility, most women can conceive after their pregnancy. During this time, the oncologist should discuss the options for contraception, such as an IUD, with their patients. The contraceptive pill is generally not a good idea after breast cancer surgery. The intrauterine device, on the other hand, should be inserted after 4 weeks of birth, in order to minimize the risk of the cancer returning.

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The doctor can perform surgery during any trimester of the pregnancy. A lumpectomy or mastectomy is usually the best option if breast cancer is found in the early stages. Radiation therapy may also be used, but isn't recommended during pregnancy. Radiation therapy isn't safe for an expectant mother. It may harm the baby and therefore should be avoided. If you choose to undergo radiation therapy, your doctor will prescribe it after delivery.

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Although there is no definitive test for breast cancer in pregnancy, the symptoms of this disease are based on a variety of factors. For example, a palpable mass may be a sign of breast cancer. However, an ultrasound can characterize the suspicious mass and identify its characteristics. A breast ultrasound is 95% accurate in diagnosing PABC. If the cancer is operable, surgery is the first option. However, radiation therapy is not recommended during pregnancy, because of possible fetal malformations and delays in neurocognitive development. While chemotherapy is a viable option for high-risk breast cancer, it can be counterproductive during the first trimester of pregnancy.

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Women with cancer should communicate with their oncology and obstetric care teams. The two teams should work together to determine the best treatment plan for the mother and unborn child. Often, the treatment of breast cancer is similar for both non-pregnant women and pregnant women. The obstetrician may prescribe medicines to induce labor and delivery. However, there is a risk that cancer cells may reach the placenta, which is crucial for the nutrition of the unborn child.

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