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Question about Nipple Inversion
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Question about Nipple Inversion

I already have an appointment with my doctor this week, but I am unsure of something.  When reading symptoms of breast cancer "nipple inversion" is one of them.  I honestly have not paid too much attention to my breasts before, but after reading this i became concerned.  My left nipple is not so much inverted - just kind of flat.  It doesn't "go in" but it doesn't "stick out" either - whereas my right nipple does stick out a bit.  If i manipulate the nipple or it is cold, the nipple will stand out, but like I said when "resting" it is just sort of flat.  Is this a concern since it's only on one breast?  If it were malignant would it never be able to stick out?
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242529_tn?1292452814
Dear PamelaC,  The nipple does not always stick out, it is normal that it is flat when not stimulated.  There could be differences in the degree of response between the breasts.  When you see your doctor make sure they are aware of your concerns and can help you with determining the normal breast exam and what to look for as abnormal.  

5 Comments
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Avatar_f_tn
I am having almost the same problem, my left nipple "is" inverted and I have gone for my mammogram early. The Dr then sent me for Us but they were deemed "normal" even though the radiology dr said she could detect a difference in my nipples and the texture. I am having a breast MRI tonight . I do have pain behind my nipple and in my left armpit and shoulder/ breast. My lungs showed calcifications but so far no one seems too concerned about that.

Good luck
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Avatar_f_tn
I just wanted to check with you and see how your MRI went.  I hope everything is alright and you get some answers.
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Avatar_n_tn
     Hi, like yourself I just thought that came with age after 40. I had breast cancer in that breast. It is a concern possibly ask for a ultra sound and mamogram (mammogram)
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Avatar_n_tn
I had breast cancer in 1996 at the age of 44. It was in my right breast. The tumor was .9 mm x .9 mm x .9 mm in size. The tumor was 20% DCIS with the remaining part being invasive tubular lobular cancer.I had a lumpectomy and axillary dissection followed by 6 weeks of radiation.

In 2006, over a period of weeks I noticed the nipple of my right breast flattening. I went to my oncologist's office and had a clinical breast exam performed, and nothing suspicious was felt. Though I had had my yearly bilateral mammogram about six months earlier, my oncologist sent me for a mammogram of my right breast.

Nothing was seen on the mammogram, but while I was in the radiology office, the doctor suggested I also get a sonogram of the breast, which I and my oncologist agreed would be wise,so the oncologist faxed over the script so I could have the test right then and there.

The ultrasound technician did the sonogram, then a radiologist came in and told me nothing was seen. I told her that something had to be wrong as I could see the change in my nipple over the period of a few weeks. She then performed the sonogram procedure herself and told me there was nothing there. I asked her to explain to me what she thought the cause of the change in the nipple could be.  She said it was due to changes still going on from the radiation treatment 10 years earlier.  I told her it did not make any sense to me; that explanation only seemed reasonable if the change occurred over a period of years, but this was not the case - the change occurred in a matter of weeks.

I went back to my oncologist. He did a clinical exam and still nothing unusual was felt. He assured me things were okay.  I got dressed, and he said to be absolutely sure, I could have a breast MRI.

I did have the MRI and it turned out that there was cancer (invasive lobular cancer) throughout that breast. I ended up having a mastectomy and chemo and 52 Herceptin treatments.

P.S.     After the cancer in the right breast was confirmed with a biopsy, I asked for an MRI of my left breast (knowing that lobular cancer is often bilateral).  The breast MRI showed a small suspicious area (not visible on a repeat mammogram).  

My oncologist recommended a double mastectomy and my surgeon agreed. I got a second opinion from another surgeon (in a National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center) who said whatever it was was small, and that in a few weeks the hospital would have equipment set up to do a biopsy under MRI guidance.  There was a delay in getting the equipment set up and I could not wait, so I had my right breast removed and then had 8 chemo treatments and started Herceptin.

I was going to have the MRI-guided biopsy, but my regular surgeon said to have a mammogram first. The cancer in my left breast was now visible by mammogram, so I had a mammogram-guided wire localization and a breast biopsy.

It turned out to be a very tiny (.7 mm) invasive lobular cancer.  I had a mastectomy. Sentinel node biopsy found a micrometastasis in the sentinel node.  A subsequent axillary node dissection  found no additional cancer.

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Moral of the story - trust your instincts. If you notice a change in your body, check it out  don't rest until you get a satisfactory explanation.
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