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Breast Cancer Self-Assessment: Remember the Basics - 1, 2, 3, 4 & A.B.C

Breasts are not twins but siblings that look similar with minor changes in size, shape or presence of a mole or scar.

The human breast structure

Breasts also face the threat of the big "C", but how do we nip it in the bud?

To spot the unusual difference between the two “siblings”, remember the basics

How to self-check for breast cancer?

Coming back to number “2.”

1. See or visual inspection

Here are steps on how to “see” or visually inspect for breast cancer


Stand in front of the mirror.


Place your hands on the hips. 

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Raise both hands straight overhead & look for changes

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Put your hands down, look for any difference from raised hands.

2. Feeling or palpation

Use your ring, index and middle (R.I.M) fingers to feel the breasts while you shower or before you sleep. Examine each breast in turn, starting with your right hand on the left breast, then switch sides.

Under the shower

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With R.I.M fingers, lightly press every part of the breast. 

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Gradually increase pressure while moving to the nipple.

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Use a circular pattern to check for abnormalities.

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Check under the areola. 

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Gently squeeze the nipple
for any discharge

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Repeat on the other breast
for a thorough examination.

Before sleep

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Press down on the breast in
a circular motion

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Increase pressure while going
from outside to centre.

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Check the armpit and
collarbone similarly.

What are the signs and symptoms to look out for?

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Unusual colour changes
(red, blue ish purple, yellow,

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Unusual pain

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Lumps, bumps or swelling

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Unusual change in breast’s
size, shape or symmetry

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Breast skin s scaliness

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Orange peel like structure

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Sores or rashes on the skin

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Indentation or pricking

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Nipple discharge (colourless,
bloody, or milky)

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Nipple inversion

Consult a doctor in case of any abnormalities

Remember, early detection ensures a 90-100% chance of survival.