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Having several changes to right breast/nipple. Details provided. Need for concern?

Posted by lgainza

46 yo female. No family hx of breast cancer, but several immediate family members have/had other cancers. No new meds, no recent illnesses. Appox a month ago noticed scaling of right nipple. Did not respond to Cortisone cream. Scaling is starting to spread to areola. No discharge or itching. Areola seems more pale (yellowed), with slight elongation at bottom of areola, and small dimple towards top. Nipple seems to be flattening on the top and has an appearance of sagging or drooping downward at bottom of nipple. Breast has some (mild) tenderness, with veins showing significantly more prominent. Pain on outer border of breast (running from under arm). Last mammogram 2 years ago (normal). Had hysterectomy 20 years prior. Husband is in panic mode. I have more of the "wait and see" mentality, and don't want to rush to the MD and feel like a hypochondriac. Need for concern and/or urgency to see an MD immediately?
Answers (1)
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Split the difference.  Don't panic but don't wait either.  Go see you doc immediately for a diagnostic mammogram, given your complaints.  A course of antibiotics is ok if s/he feels there's a soft tissue infection (cellulitis) going on.  But just one course should be enough.  In the meantime, get that mammogram.  And then go see a breast specialist to see if you have Paget's disease or inflammatory breast cancer.  Hopefully it's just an infection from dermatitis.  But those would be my biggest concerns if you were to come in to see me.  Good luck!
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