Breast Cancer Symptoms

Breast cancer typically doesn’t cause symptoms in its early stages. Most patients are diagnosed after a screening test, such as a mammogram – not because they noticed changes in their bodies.

Still, there are a number of signs associated with breast cancer, and it’s good to know what they are.

If you experience any of the following symptoms or changes in your breast, it doesn’t mean you have breast cancer. However, you should report any changes to your doctor to make sure you’re in good breast health.

What are common symptoms of breast cancer?
  • A breast lump or thickening that is different from surrounding tissue
  • Change in the size, shape or heaviness of one breast
  • Bloody or clear yellow discharge from the nipple
  • Change in the nipple’s appearance
  • Tenderness, pain, or aching in one area of the breast
What are uncommon symptoms of breast cancer?

The following symptoms may point to more invasive types of breast cancer:

  • Redness or dimpled skin on the breast that resembles an orange peel
  • Change in the color of the breast to red, purple, pink or a bruised appearance
  • Unusual warmth of one breast
  • Itching
  • A rapid change in the look of one breast, over the course of days or weeks
  • Peeling or flaking of the nipple skin
  • Flattening or inversion of the nipple
  • Enlarged lymph nodes under the arm or above or below the collarbone


Being proactive about breast changes is key

Breast changes are often a normal part of a woman’s monthly cycle and they don’t always mean breast cancer. But it’s important to be aware of the changes your breasts go through monthly. Closely monitoring your breasts will help you be able to tell the difference between what’s normal for your body and changes that may be cause for concern. Take control of your breast health and don’t hesitate to contact your doctor or Siteman if you have concerns and would like to get screened.

Make an appointment

If it’s time for your annual mammogram, or if you’ve missed it, our Washington University breast specialists are here for you. You can request an appointment at any of our locations or use the button below to access our online self-scheduling.

For your safety and ours, no walk-ins are being accepted. This gives our staff extra time to thoroughly clean exam areas and equipment after each appointment.

Convenient scheduling options

Use the buttons below to schedule your mammogram now through the BJC Online Scheduler or request an appointment online and one of our schedulers will call you within 24 hours, Monday through Friday. You can also call us directly at 314-747-7222.

Schedule My Mammogram Now Book via the BJC Online Scheduler       Request an Appointment Submit an online form