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Breast pain Assessment Questionnaire

Questions Your Doctor May Ask - and Why!

During a consultation, your doctor will use various techniques to assess the symptom: Breast pain. These will include a physical examination and possibly diagnostic tests. (Note: A physical exam is always done, diagnostic tests may or may not be performed depending on the suspected condition) Your doctor will ask several questions when assessing your condition. It is important to openly share any pertinent information to help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis.

It is also very important to bring an up-to-date list of all of your all medical conditions, medications including dosages, and names of numbers of any specialist you see.

Create your printable checklist by answering questions that your doctor may ask below:

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  1. When did you first notice the breast pain?

    Why: to establish if acute or chronic.

  2. Is it unilateral or bilateral?

    Why: Unilateral breast pain suggests mastitis.

  3. Benign mammary dysplasia or advanced breast cancer. Note only 5% of breast cancers are associated with pain. In benign mammary dysplasia the ache may extend down inner aspect of the upper arm
  4. Is your menstrual period on time or overdue?

    Why: to assess possibility of pregnancy as cause.

  5. Does breast tenderness and swelling increase before the menstrual period and settle after the menstrual period?

    Why: suggests benign mammary dysplasia.

  6. Have you noticed "lumpiness" in your breasts in the past?

    Why: suggests benign mammary dysplasia.

  7. Has the painful area been red or hot?

    Why: may suggest acute mastitis (most common).

  8. Inflammatory breast cancer or mastitis carcinomatosa (rare form of breast cancer found in young women often whilst breast feeding, is red hot and often tender)
  9. Age?

    Why: benign mammary dysplasia unlikely after menopause; breast cancer rare in age 12-25 and uncommon in age 26-35.

  10. Are you breast feeding?

    Why: may suggest acute mastitis.

  11. Breast abscess or Candida albicans infection (which causes severe breast pain, producing a feeling like "hot cords", especially during and after breast feeding)
  12. Assess risk factors for breast cancer e.g. increasing age ( over 40 years of age)
  13. Pre-existing benign breast lumps
  14. Personal history of breast cancer
  15. Family history of first degree relative with breast cancer
  16. Childless until after age 30
  17. Late menopause ( after age 53)
  18. Obesity and early age when first started menstruating
  19. Past history of breast problems?

    Why: e.g. cyclical breast pain.

  20. Mastitis
  21. Nipple problems or breast cancer
  22. Family history of breast cancer in first degree relative?

    Why: increases the risk threefold.

  23. Medications?

    Why: Hormone replacement therapy may cause diffuse bilateral breast pain as a side-effect and also increase the risk of breast cancer.

  24. Breast mass

    Why: suggests mastitis, abscess, benign mammary dysplasia or advanced breast cancer. If tender masses in both breasts consider benign mammary dysplasia.

  25. Nipple discharge

    Why: A bloody discharge from the breast suggests malignant breast cancer or sometimes benign mammary dysplasia. A pus-like discharge may suggest an abscess or mastitis. A watery discharge of various colors (clear to green-grey) suggests benign mammary dysplasia.

  26. Fever

    Why: would suggest acute mastitis or abscess.

  27. Symptoms of pregnancy E.g. lack of menstrual periods, nausea, urinary frequency

    Why: may suggest cause of breast pain.

  28. Symptoms suggestive of metastatic disease e.g. back pain, shortness of breath, weight loss, and headache

Conditions listing medical symptoms: Breast pain:

The following list of conditions have 'Breast pain' or similar listed as a symptom in our database. This computer-generated list may be inaccurate or incomplete. Always seek prompt professional medical advice about the cause of any symptom.

Select from the following alphabetical view of conditions which include a symptom of Breast pain or choose View All.

View All A B C D E F G H I L M N O P R S T V Z

Conditions listing medical complications: Breast pain:

The following list of medical conditions have 'Breast pain' or similar listed as a medical complication in our database.


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