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Breast cancer represents the leading cause of cancer death among women in Switzerland. Find out what the symptoms are, and how to diagnose it.


The cancer be you is the most common cancer in Suisse and represents the leading cause of cancer death in women. The term " cancer be you » corresponds to the presence of abnormal cells in a breast : the latter multiply in an anarchic manner in order to form a malignant tumor. So what are the symptoms of this cancer ? What are the risk factors ? How the diagnose ?

Laure-Anne Graf
Laure-Anne Graf
Co-director @ Grangettes Switzerland
summary of the article

Symptoms of breast cancer

The cancer be you is sometimes responsible for symptoms which can alert the patient, such as:

  • A size at the level of a breast. The swelling is not painful, it is felt when self-palpation ;
  • A deformation or a change in the breast size ;
  • Of the lymph nodes hard, palpable in the armpits;
  • A retraction or nipple deviation ;
  • A redness, edema And heat of an area of the breast;
  • An aspect of Orange peel part of a breast;
  • A breast pain localized;
  • And breast discharge greenish or blood-colored.

If the cancer is not diagnosed at the onset of first symptoms, the tumor can then grow and spread to other parts of the body. We then observe other symptoms later: the patient feels bone pain, nausea, loss of appetite, weight loss or even jaundice. She is short of breath, coughing, and there is an accumulation of fluid around her lungs (pleural effusion). THE headache, the vision double as well as a muscular weakness can also be symptoms of breast cancer.



Breast cancer detection and screening

Most of the time, the cancer be you is suspected following abnormal results during a mammography of screening. It may be a organized screening during campaigns Pink October for example, or individual screening proposed by the doctor where the gynecologist.


In some cases, a swelling is discovered during the breast palpation or some axillary hollows at a gynecological examination.

Breast Cancer Risk Factors

Today, we know several risk factors of cancer be you. However, it is important to point out that there are still uncertainties regarding the involvement and weight of several of these factors.


First of all, we observe age-related factors : almost 80% of breast cancers develop after 50 years. There are also risk factors linked to lifestyles, such as the alcohol and tobacco consumption, At overweight or even the fact of not or little practicing physical activity. In addition, there are risk factors linked to certain personal and family medical history (breast, ovarian and/or endometrial cancer). Finally, some hormonal treatments of menopause may represent a risk factor for cancer be you.



Diagnostic du cancer du be

In order to establish a diagnostic, several examinations are necessary:

Diagnostic mammography

The diagnostic mammography is a x-ray who employs low dose radiation in order to produce images be you. It is used to analyze the abnormal results observed during a screening mammography or an examination breast clinic. The diagnostic mammography also allows you to locate a abnormal region during a biopsy.


Ultrasound uses sound waves high frequency to produce images of body parts. Thanks to it, we can know if a mass in the breast is a solid tumor or a cyst. Healthcare professionals can also use ultrasound in order to guide the needle biopsy to the region that needs to be analyzed.


When a woman has breast cancer At an advanced stage, she can have an ultrasound to find out if the cancer has spread to the liver (liver metastases).

The biopsy

The biopsy East the exam which makes it possible to diagnose with certainty the cancer be you. The doctor removes tissues or cells from the body so that they can be analyzed in laboratory. This is the report of pathologist which will then indicate whether or not there are cancer cells in the sample.


There are several types of biopsy : fine needle biopsy, core biopsy, core biopsy under stereotaxic guidance… The type of biopsy will be chosen based on the mass, and the ability to feel it to the touch or not.
The doctor uses the mammogram or ultrasound to find the region to analyze. The biopsy is done in the hospital, and the patient can go home when it is finished.

What cosmetic products to use in case of breast cancer?

In case of cancer, it is recommended to use cosmetics at a time non-irritants, therefore without perfume or alcohol, and very moisturizers, who have healing properties. It is also important to use cosmetics which follow a charte 100% clean, and which are therefore formulated without endocrine disruptors, without phenoxyethanol, without parabens, without silicones, without PEGs, without irritants, without allergens, without petroleum-derived ingredients and without pollutants.


Opt for makeup removers soft, soothing facial lotions, of the face creams perfectly moisturizing : in the INCI list, look for ingredients such as aloe vera gel, vegetable oils, shea butter, honey, squalane, hyaluronic acid or even vegetable waxes.


Get more information about breast cancer on the website League against cancer where the Swiss Screening Center.