Do fibrocystic breast changes increase my risk of breast cancer?

Answers from Sandhya Pruthi, M.D.

No. Fibrocystic breast changes don't increase your risk of breast cancer.

Having fibrocystic breasts is very common. Women with this noncancerous (benign) condition often experience lumpy, painful breasts. The cause of fibrocystic breast changes isn't completely understood. But the condition is likely associated with hormone fluctuations during a woman's menstrual cycle.

Although it doesn't increase your risk of breast cancer, having fibrocystic breasts may interfere with your ability to detect new breast lumps or other abnormal changes that might need to be evaluated by your doctor. It's important to become familiar with how your breasts normally feel so that you'll know when something just doesn't feel right.

Feb. 15, 2012