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What Are The Difficulties In Diagnosing Breast Cancer?

Going through a cancer scare is hard enough on a patient. But knowing that you could have been diagnosed sooner tears at you a little bit more. Watch the video below as Dr. Kenneth Chessick explains some of the difficulties in diagnosing breast cancer, and how breast cancer is missed.

When you get a cold, you may drink some cold medicine to feel better. If your sinuses decide to go a little haywire, you take some nasal spray to clear the passages. When you feel a lump or something doesn’t feel right, you expect your doctor to find what you cannot see. If your doctor does not perform a thorough examination, it can be all the difference in successful treatment and recovery.

Do you feel that your doctor did not perform a thorough examination when you expressed concerns about your condition or health? Let the Law Office Of Kenneth Chessick help you find the answers you need and get to the bottom of your case. Give us a call today!


Learn More:

Delay In Breast Cancer: Why Is Breast Cancer Diagnosed Late?

How Do You Feel After Breast Cancer Diagnosis?

Can Breast Cancer Be Diagnosed On An MRI?


Video Transcript

0:00 Intro
0:30 Reasons For Patient Visits
0:47 Thorough Examinations
2:10 Repeat Examinations Are Critical

What are the difficulties in diagnosing breast cancer? That is really at the heart of what the doctor must be aware of in order to accurately make a diagnosis of in a timely diagnosis of breast cancer in this patient. A patient doesn’t ever come into the office with a diagnosis of breast cancer unless there’s already been a biopsy that confirmed the diagnosis. 


0:30 Reasons For Patient Visits

They come into the office of the doctor with either a lump that they feel or a pain that they feel in their breast or some other symptom, bleeding from the nipple, dimpling of the skin, they may feel a lump under the arm. 


0:47 Thorough Examinations

They come to the doctor looking for an answer and it behooves the primary care doctor, obstetrician, gynecologist, family doctor, or general practitioner, to examine that patient in a careful fashion, and make sure that they’ve done a thorough examination. That thorough examination includes palpation of the mass but also feeling under the arm for any lymph nodes that might be in the armpit, looking at the skin as well to see if there are abnormalities of the skin overlying it.

Another way that cancer can frequently be missed by the primary care doctor is even after they order a mammogram, they don’t read the report, which is surprisingly common. Radiologists don’t always report a biopsy is mandatory. Many times they couch the report in terms that say that follow-up is recommended or cancer cannot be excluded and the primary care doctor doesn’t understand or doesn’t appreciate the importance of follow-up.


2:10 Repeat Examinations Are Critical

Repeat examination of that patient’s mass is critical by palpation if that’s what’s required, by repeat mammograms after a period of one or two or three months to see if there’s any change in them in the mass. It’s very very common that when cancers grow, they change over course. They get larger, they may cause increased skin changes, they may cause increased abnormalities in the examination, and so serial examinations either clinically and or by mammogram are required because you must reassure that patient by serial examinations that we have excluded breast cancer, and that oftentimes is not done, and that is one of the common causes of delays in diagnosis of breast cancer and negligent doctor delay in diagnosis changes in stages, and changes the chances for a cure.