Breast Lump - Consultation, Investigation Diagnosis and Treatment

Finding a lump in your breast can be concerning. At LycaHealth Orpington, we have outlined the process of what to do if you find a lump and what this could be. Do not delay any action - we are here to support you and be seen as soon as possible.

If you feel a lump or change in your breast, it’s normal to be concerned. However, most lumps are not breast cancer, but something less serious, such as a benign (not cancer) breast condition.

Some lumps go away on their own. In younger women, lumps can often be related to the menstrual cycle and naturally go away by the end of the cycle.

However, if you find a lump (or any change in your breast or underarm area), we can provide a service that can give you answers as to what you are feeling.

What is a breast lump?

Breast tissue naturally has a bumpy texture and some people can have lumpier breasts than others. In most cases, this is no cause for concern and if the lumpiness is consistent throughout the breast and feels similar to the other breast, then it’s probably normal breast tissue.

Breast lumps that feel harder or different from the rest of the breast (or the other breast) or that feel like a change are a concern and should be checked.

See a health care provider if you:

  •     Find a new lump (or any change) that feels different from the rest of your breast
  •     Find a new lump (or any change) that feels different from your other breast
  •     Feel something that’s different from what you’ve felt before

When you have found a lump, please contact your healthcare provider to get your lump diagnosed and treated if necessary, as soon as possible.

I have found a breast lump: What do I do next?

It is important that you check your breasts and nipples regularly to see if there are any lumps or abnormalities. If there are any concerns the first point of call would be to contact your GP for an initial appointment.

Your GP may then decide that you need to be seen in a breast clinic. Within this clinic the consultant breast surgeon will complete a medical history then a physical examination.  The Consultant will then refer to the imaging department for the most appropriate tests. These could include the following:

  • Mammogram – A mammogram is a breast X-ray which can identify areas for further investigation which may not have been picked up on the physical examination
  • Breast Ultrasound – An ultrasound for breast uses a probe over the area to detect breast abnormalities using sound waves. During the ultrasound procedure you may have a biopsy of any identifiable lump – sometimes if cysts are identified then these can be drained straight away.
  • Breast MRI – An MRI can create a more detailed image of inside the breast. This scan may not be necessary if the mammogram or ultrasound has given a full diagnosis. Breast MRI cannot be completed as part of the one-stop clinic, and if required will be booked for another day if this test is deemed necessary.
  • Breast Vacuum Assisted Biopsy (VAB) –. This investigation will only be recommended if the area highlighted for testing requires a larger area of tissue sampling or if a previous biopsy undertaken shows that the area needs further investigation.  Vacuum assisted Biopsy is usually not completed on the same day as a one-stop clinic.

Once the appropriate scans and tests have been performed, your breast team will now have a better understanding of your breast lump and therefore can explain the next steps.

Diagnosis & Treatment for Breast Cancer

Once the lump has been identified, your consultant will go through the options that you have.

If your breast lump diagnosis has been identified as benign, your consultant may want to monitor this over a period of time to check if the breast lump has grown or gone away. If the lump is causing any discomfort then there may be a reason to remove it if able to.

If the breast lump has come back as a cancer then further investigations may be required. Once all investigations are completed, your investigation results will be discussed in a multi-disciplinary meeting with a specialist consultant, who looks after patients with breast cancer and a treatment plan will be made. Your original consultant will then go through your breast cancer treatment options with you.

We understand that this time can be very overwhelming, therefore from the beginning you will have the full support of the breast care team including a specialist nurse who will work with you to make sure you understand your pathway and have the individualised support that you need.

Available at the following clinic


01689 490 111

Open Mon – Fri: 8AM to 8PM

Sat: 9AM to 2PM

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Don’t hesitate, contact us

Breast lumps being detected, diagnosed, and treated early is important. Symptoms of breast cancer can at times not be seen or felt, so if you have no symptoms or you are due a breast screening – do not delay any further.

If you have found a lump or any abnormal changes to your breast, please contact us.  Our one-stop breast clinic is available for you so make an appointment and be seen as soon as possible.

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