TERMS USED IN GUIDELINES
Before we list the guidelines, it is essential to understand a few terms used in the guidelines. They are as follows:
Breast Awareness implies familiarity with one's own breast. A self examination can be done monthly during bath, best time being just after the end of menses. This helps to keep in notice any irregularity, any lumps, the skin, the nipple etc. Also, breast awareness also includes a knowledge of breast cancer. A woman should be aware of what possible changes could occur in a breast when a cancers develops in the breast. If you haven't read it, please do read the 'Early Detection of Breast Cancer' section.
'Clinical Breast Examination' (CBE)
Clinical Breast Examination (CBE) implies a visit to a doctor, where the doctor makes a detailed evaluation of the patient's history and performs a body checkup including breast examination with an aim to detect any suspicious abnormality. A doctor, who is in touch with the subject and who has an experience in breast disorders may be able to pick up an early cancer even before it may manifest, as also may be able to appropriately rule out any cancer in a woman who may be having some breast symptom.
Mammography is a special x ray of the breast performed in two directions, to show up any abnormal lumps located in the breast. Mammography can detect very small lumps which may not be felt by hand. However, mammography has a sensitivity of at most 60 to 70% and we strongly urge readers preferably not to undergo mammography on their own will; but only after consulting a doctor. Consulting a doctor is of utmost importance, since mammography may show a lot of nonspecific findings which can generate a lot of anxiety for no reason; and on the other hand, if something is diagnosed, then a doctor's guidance for further management will be of prime importance.