Fibrocystic breast changes is the medical term we use to describe the abnormal dense growth of breast tissues. These fibrocystic changes are sometimes associated with breast tenderness that is worse in the premenstrual time. Sometimes this is associated with milky brown nipple discharge.
These dense breast changes are felt on examination of the breast or seen on mammograms, breast ultrasound and breast MRI or CT scans. It is taking a long time, but finally, mainstream medicine is understanding that fibrocystic breast changes (also known as dense breast tissue) is actually precancerous breast changes. These precancerous changes need treating rather than ignoring.
This month in the “Journal of the American College of Radiology” found that 66% of women are aware that dense breast tissue is associated with an increased risk of breast cancer. This awareness is important and it is getting better. On the flip side of this news, the same study found that less than half of women with precancerous dense breast tissue changes in their breast felt that their health care providers took the issue seriously enough to discuss this risk with them and give advice about what those women should do to treat the dense breast tissue and thus lower their risk for cancer.
While the study doesn’t prove that most doctors don’t know that dense breast tissue if precancerous, it does suggest that most doctors don’t know what to do about dense breast tissue and how to reduce this risk factor. I am shocked on a regular basis when clients come in to see me and they have their mammogram report done from another doctor in the USA. The mammogram report actually says that they find a high percentage of dense fibrocystic breast changes but the client reports to me that their doctor actually told them these changes are not important and they are not a concern. Their doctor missed the chance to tell the clients that they are at increased risk for breast cancer. They missed the chance to help that client treat the precancerous breast changes and reduce their risk for breast cancer.
You can try taking anti-inflammatory supplements like omega 3 fatty acids, olive oil and vitamin A, D, E to help with the swelling and pain. Some women notice that reducing caffeine intake helps with the pain. If you notice blood in the nipple discharge or that a breast area is an actual lump rather than a dense area, then you should see your doctor.
There are so many effective strategies your doctor might use to treat fibrocystic breast changes. To find the cause of the dense breast tissue, we need to look for the hormone imbalances that are ‘feeding’ and stimulating the abnormal growth of the breast. The second issue to explore is the energy changes in the body that have caused the breast to not have enough energy to properly maintain and repair the breast tissue structures. The third issue to consider is the possibility of a medication, dietary or toxin that is interfering with normal breast health and may be part of the cause for the breast density. The protocols for an integrated medical solution for dense precancerous changes in the breast are individualized for the client’s situation. The last thought here is to remind everyone that men also have breast tissue and if a man notices breast tissue growing then he should have it checked because 2% of breast cancers are in men.