Yes there are indeed connections within breast-feeding and breast cancer, however it actually decreases the chance of getting breast cancer when women breastfeed.
There is a small window gap for a slight increase in developing breast cancer, but it’s mainly due to the change in hormones. There is reasonable cause for women to worry about the condition when they notice a slight change in their breasts. In fact the problems that occur when breastfeeding are nearly identical.
It is problematic when women have symptoms because it’s hard to get the proper diagnoses for whether it is cancer or not. The mammograms that are offered can not give a for sure answer if it’s cancer or not and doctors usually think of other reasons other than the chance of it being cancer. There are other complications that would cause lumps or other similar symptoms like plugged ducts, engorgement, and mastitis.
In the cases for Mastitis, the milk builds up in the breasts and end up leaking in nearby areas. It can give women things like fevers, queasiness, and make the breasts red with the look of irritation. Increasing the amount of time breastfeeding can solve this issue by getting rid of all the build up, the baby will drain the milk once given enough time.
Sometimes Engorgement can lead to mastitis, but the breasts become encumbered with all the milk being produced. Simple fixes could be things like increased intervals of breastfeeding or simply just massaging the breasts. The body will slowly adjust to the amount the baby requires and engorgement will leave or not happen as often.
Milk will become stuck from its thickness and/or lack of consistency in drainage. This causes plugged ducts and causes a lump that becomes sore. Like previous solutions, a massage of the breasts and more consistent breastfeeding can fix the plugged up duct.
Women should start becoming concerned when the lump they have has had a prolonged stay. Normal issues that commonly happen with breastfeeding commonly leave fairly quickly or gradually leave. Lumps are normally able to mush around within the breast but if it does not move then there is a problem.
If breast cancer is present and if the patient is a mother, then she should refrain from breastfeeding the child. The patient is most likely going through a treatment and the side effects might negatively impact the baby and mother. Treatments that are available and commonly used are:
Surgery: physically remove lumps or sometimes even the breast.
Radiation therapy: The method for radiation allows women to breastfeed. The side effects include things like; fatigue, hair loss, skin effects, breasts swelling, etc.
Chemotherapy: Medications kill cancer cells within the body but takes a toll on the body, In which women would need to stop breastfeeding since the milk contains the medications.