Complex Breast Cyst: Is it Cancerous?
A complicated or complex breast cyst pertains to cysts that carry something other than clear fluid. Both simple and complex cysts are the most prevalent types of cystic breast lesions. Cysts are normally filled with fluid which develops second to terminal ductal lobular units or TDLU. They are normally multiple or bilateral and can wax or decline in size. The symptoms and signs when one finds a breast cyst is: smooth and quick to move around/oval lump that has distinguishable edges. This typically, but not always, suggests it is benign.
Other symptoms of complex breast cyst include nipple discharge which is yellow, clear, dark-brown, or straw-colored. You will also feel tenderness or breast pain in this particular part of a breast lump. If you feel these sensations, best to seek a physician right away. When left untreated, benign cysts may lead to more serious complications such as infection. This implies that the cyst is filled with pus and bacteria which turns into an abscess. When the abscess starts to burst inside your body, there will be a blood poisoning risk called septicemia. A complex breast cyst accounts for roughly 5 percent of breast cysts which are observable in screening mammograms. A complex breast cyst suggests careful follow-up then often a biopsy. A complex ovarian cyst is one that contains either a solid or bloody substance. A complex cyst is most likely going to require treatment. Keep reading to learn more about complex breast cysts.
An Overview of the Complex Breast Cyst
How does a breast cyst form in the first place? Your breasts contain glandular tissue lobes which are arranged daisy petals. These lobes are divided into tinier lobules which make milk during pregnancy as well as breastfeeding. The supportive tissue which gives your breast the shape it has is from fibrous and fatty connective tissue. Breast cysts normally develop due to fluid accumulation within the inside breast glands.
Breast cysts are discoverable in the first, second, or both breasts. The symptoms and signs of breast cyst include the following:
- Smooth and easily movable oval/round lump that have distinct edges (usually benign)
- Nipple discharge can be yellow, clear, dark-brown, or straw-colored
- Breast tenderness or pain in the breast lump area
- Increase in the size of the breast lump as well as tenderness of breast right before your menstruation cycle
- A decrease in size of the breast as well as a resolution of various other symptoms right after your menstruation cycle
To diagnose a cyst, doctors try to determine whether or not it is complex, simple, or in between. Ultrasound imaging is determinable for this.
When to seek a physician
Regular breast tissue usually feels nodular or lumpy. However, if you notice a new breast lump that continues to persist after your menstruation cycle, or if a current breast lump changes or grows, seek a physician right away.
Breast cysts are definable with their size
- Microcysts are very tiny to be able to feel but can be observed in imaging tests, like an ultrasound or mammography.
- Macrocysts are big enough for them to be felt and will grow to around 1 – 2 inches in diameter. Big breast cysts may put on pressure neighboring breast tissue. This causes breast discomfort or pain.
- Experts may not know what the cause of breast cyst is. It may develop due to hormonal changes caused by monthly periods. A few pieces of evidence suggest how excess estrogen in one’s body can stimulate breast tissue can bring about breast cysts.
Know that several radiologists use terms like “complex” or “complicated” interchangeably. When you notice either term, request precise information regarding the cyst’s features. Most of them are usually benign. When it comes to complex cysts, doctors are going to rule out possibilities about how these solid areas have cancer cells. In cases like this, a biopsy is necessary.
Treatment and Follow-Through
For simple cysts, treatment is not required unless you notice the cyst to be quite large, painful, or uncomfortable. The cyst may then be drained with the help of a fine needle. If ever the cyst returns, it can be reevaluated using ultrasound and mammogram and may be drained another time. The majority of women who have simple cysts return to regular screening for breast cancer.
When it comes to complex or complicated cysts, the next plan is usually similar, as soon as imaging verifies the cyst is growing. In certain cases, the doctor might suggest fine-needle aspiration for draining then examine the inside fluid. Or, the doctor will ask to check up on you every 6 to 12 months for 1 to 2 years for a cyst check-up. Normally, you are going to go through a clinical breast examination plus ultrasound, whether there is or isn’t mammography.
If at some point the physician feels the cyst carries suspicious features indicating it may be breast cancer, the doctor can order for a biopsy to ensure any kind of solid parts inside of the cyst is benign. The doctor can use ultrasound for core needle guiding toward the cyst then remove the tissue sample for testing under the microscope. Rarely, the doctor will need to take out the cyst. This is referred to as the excisional biopsy.
Normally, women are concerned once they get to hear the term “complicated” or “complex,” however, most cysts are usually benign. Think about the analogy of a glass of clear water left out for several months. Then you return to it, the water is already cloudy and dirty. This is the same process with cyst fluid after a certain time.
If you carry several cysts or that you start to develop new ones more frequently, you can consider seeing a breast specialist. A cyst/s in the body including several risk factors for breast cancer like a strong family record will lead several women to go through this. Even if cysts will not heighten the risk of breast cancer, breast specialist visits will be reassuring.
Now you have more knowledge about complex breast cysts and what to go about its treatment and severeness prevention.