What Should I Do if I Find a Lump When Pregnant?

Question: What should I do if I'm pregnant and I find a lump?

Answer: If you're pregnant, getting breast lumps is very common. Usually they're just from the stimulation of the hormones of pregnancy, and your breasts are sort of getting ready to take on this very important job, which is to make milk that will feed your baby. So it's very common to feel real lumpy and bumpy on both sides in a pretty even way.

But if you feel one specific lump that's not like the surrounding breast tissue, that's not going away, and may even be getting bigger, please bring it to the attention of your obstetrician for your regular visits, or bring it to the attention of your primary care doctor, because you want him to check it out just to make sure it's ok. Usually it is okay, they'll do a physical exam, an ultrasound; it's pretty easy, straightforward. Usually it's just a collection of milk, or some other kind of substance, in a particular pocket of your breast. Nothing to worry about.

But sometimes, occasionally, breast cancer is diagnosed in someone who's pregnant, and you want to make sure that you get the advantage of early detection. So if you find something, bring it to the attention of your obstetrician, have them check it out further, just to make sure it's okay and nothing to worry about. But if it is something of concern that you do need to be concerned about, take it the next step. There are women who are diagnosed with breast cancer during pregnancy and, you know, you can do quite well under those circumstances -- but you don't want to delay that diagnosis.

Next: What Types of Benign Breast Lumps Are Most Often Found?

Previous: If I Have Fibrocystic Changes In My Breasts Should I See My Doctor For Every New Lump?

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