93% of adults can spot 1 symptom of breast cancer, but not others

Even though a majority of breast cancer cases are diagnosed without a lump that can be detected, less than half recognize other symptoms often associated with it, according to new research from the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Ninety-three percent recognize a lump as a sign of breast cancer, but only 51 percent recognize nipple discharge as a possible sign of the disease. On top of that, 45 percent recognize thickening of the skin as a symptom, 41 percent recognize loss of feeling in part of the breast as a symptom, 39 percent recognize breast puckering as a symptom and only 31 percent recognize an inverted nipple as a possible signal of breast cancer. 

Researchers found that there is also a widespread "this will not happen to me," mentality when it comes to how individuals perceive the disease. In the survey of more than 1,000 people, 75 percent of women and 91 percent of men reported that they do not believe they will get breast cancer.

"Many breast changes are the result of aging and childbirth; however, breast cancer can present in a number of ways," Ashley Pariser, MD, a breast medical oncologist and director of breast cancer survivorship services at the OSU cancer center stated in the release. "It is important that people feel safe to address these concerns in a timely way with their doctor."

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