Not All Breast Lumps are Breast Cancer

Lately, Brenda and I have been receiving many phone calls from women who have found a lump (or lumps) in their breasts. They ask for our help and guidance for what to do next. 

Before we give any suggestions though, we go through this information to help women come to a place of reassurance and grounding. We all understand just how frightening it can be to discover a lump in our breast, so we feel it is important that more information is shared.

Please note that we always suggest that women follow their intuition on their breast health and never deny what it is they truly know. Follow up and evaluation is so very important for all discreet breast findings.

Note: 90% of Breast Conditions are Not Cancer

90% of Breast Health problems are benign.

Abnormalities may include:


  • They are NOT related to breast cancer.
  • About 60% of women will have at least one cyst during their lifetime.
  • Cysts are collections of fluids in breast tissue.
  • They are usually small and do not cause problems, but may increase in size, form a lump, or cause pain or tenderness.
  • Cysts occur most commonly between the ages of 35 and 50 years and especially between 42 and 48 years.
  • They are uncommon after menopause except in women on Hormone Replacement Therapy.


  • Hormonal thickening is NOT related to the development of breast cancer.
  • This can occur at any age during the reproductive years and may come and go.
  • It is a response to hormone changes and is often related to pre-menopausal breast tenderness. It usually disappears naturally after menopause.
  • Further diagnosis can be made with a combination of breast examination, mammography, ultrasound and needle biopsy.
  • No treatment is necessary unless there is pain.


  • They are not related to breast cancer but do need to be accurately diagnosed. This can usually be done by needle biopsy.
  • These are very common nodules in the breast and are commonly benign.
  • They are common in young women (under 25) but can occur at any age.
  • They appear as oval, tender masses and may not be able to be felt as lumps.
  • Many women have more than one.
  • Diagnosis is usually made by ultrasound, needle biopsy and mammography (in older women).
  • They may be removed by surgery but this is not essential.


  • Most nipple discharges are harmless – particularly if the discharge comes from more than one duct and from both nipples.
  • If the discharge is bloodstained or watery it is important to see your doctor.
  • These discharges are due to the production of fluid by normal breast cells in response to hormones.

This is simply information and should not to take the place of your own knowing and inner wisdom, or replace what your healthcare practitioner suggests for you to do.

Please feel free to call us if you have any findings that you are concerned about. As always, thermography can be part of your breast health evaluation, but other testing measures may also be necessary for complete evaluation and diagnosis.

Yours in health,
Brenda and Lynda Witt