Debunking Breast Myths – #12: Breast Trauma Does NOT Cause Cancer
What is breast trauma? Breast trauma is physical injury to the breast. This can be anything from a scratch to a bruise, from mild to serious. Car accidents and falls are two of the most common causes of breast injuries. Breast biopsies can even be considered a controlled sort of breast trauma. There are two important things to know about breast trauma, the first being that breast trauma does not cause cancer.
While all the causes of cancers are not known, there has been a LOT of research on what increases and decreases risk. The Susan G. Komen for the Cure website has a great discussion of things that do and do not increase your risk of breast cancer. Breast trauma does not increase your risk of breast cancer. It’s a simple fact, but myths about breast cancer seem to have a life unto themselves. When you hear someone mention this fear, you can politely let them know to relax, because it’s not true.
The second and possibly more important thing about breast trauma is that trauma can produce changes in your breast just as happen elsewhere in your body, with bruising, swelling and even lumps. The bruising, swelling and lumps should all resolve over a course of several weeks. If you still have changes such as swelling or lumps in your breast after the superficial bruising has faded, or after a month or so, make an appointment to see your doctor. That lump you assume was from trauma may be from something else. Cancers have definitely been discovered because of trauma bringing your attention to an area in your breast.
All told, let’s avoid breast trauma. But if it happens, don’t be traumatized with worry. And as always, let your doctor know if you have changes in your breast. Be safe, be healthy!
Originally published 8/14/13 on mammographykc.com.