Perform a BSE each month at the same time. Check for any changes in your breasts, such as lumps, knots, or skin that dimples. If you notice any changes, talk to a health care professional.
Research has shown that women who perform monthly BSEs are able to discover tumors that are smaller and at earlier stages than women who do not perform BSEs. These women are more likely to be able to avoid mastectomy, which is the surgical removal of the breast. Breast cancer causes more deaths in women ages 15 to 54 than any other cancer. More than 11,500 women age 40 and younger will be diagnosed with breast cancer this year.