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Breast Cancer Screening

*Note: Age recommendations are only guidelines and may differ for those with a family history of breast cancer or those who have other risk factors. Consult your doctor on our screening schedule.

Clinical Breast Examination:

  • Women 40 years and older should go for a Clinical Breast Examination once every year. This is an examination of the breast tissue by a healthcare professional.
  • Clinical Breast Examinations can be done at your GP clinic or polyclinic, or at a Gynaecological clinic.
  • The healthcare professional, usually a doctor, will palpate (feel) both your breasts and do a visual examination. If he/she finds anything suspicious, you will be referred for further testing (such as a mammogram/ ultrasound/ biopsy) or be given a follow-up appointment.

Risk Factors

  1. Practise a healthy lifestyle
    • Be physically active. Exercise 3 – 5 times a week for at least 30 minutes each time.
    • Maintain a healthy weight.
    • Eat a diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables and whole grains and low in fats with an emphasis on good fats (monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats) over bad fats (saturated and trans fats).
    • Limit alcohol intake to less than one alcoholic drink a day.
    • Breastfeed children instead of formula feeding them (if possible).
  2. Be aware of breast cancer and its symptoms
  3. Screen yourself for breast cancer regularly
    Early detection offers more treatment options and a better chance of survival and recovery. Take charge of your own breast health and detect changes in your breast through:

    Never be afraid to examine your breasts or to have them examined. Finding out that you do not have breast cancer is more important than the time and effort required for an examination, or any discomfort you may feel.

Symptoms of breast cancer

Consult a doctor if you notice any of the above changes

There are other breast conditions that might mimic the symptoms of breast cancer and so require further tests to diagnose. These include:

  • Cysts: Fluid-filled sacs more common in women aged 35 – 50
  • Fibroadenomas: Benign tumours made of glandular and fibrous tissue, common in younger women
  • Hyperplasia: A proliferation of cells in the lobes or ducts
  • Calcifications: Bits of calcium in the breast
  • Papillomas: Small growths that arise from the lining of the breast ducts and are often not more than 0.5-1.0cm in size
  • Phyllodes tumours: Tumours which tend to grow rapidly to a large size, sometimes up to 8-10cm in size
  • Infections of the breast: Lumps due to an infection are usually very painful and there will be skin changes such as redness and swelling over the lump

Of these, hyperplasia is believed to increase risk for breast cancer while clusters of tiny calcifications (microcalcifications) can be indications of pre-cancer or cancer.

what is breast cancer ?

Breast cancer occurs when breast cells divide and grow without control, sometimes invading surrounding tissue. In some cases, the cancer may grow very slowly while in others, it develops more rapidly. Most breast cancers start in the ducts while a small number start in the milk sacs or lobes.


Breast cancer can be classified generally as follows:

Members’ Outings 2014

BCF’s Annual Outing 2014 took place at Gardens by the Bay on 21 June 2014, Saturday. It saw a gathering of our staff and more than 30 members enjoying a sumptuous morning picnic at the Supertree Grove. Many were captivated by the beautiful blooms and flora arrangements in both Flower Dome and Cloud Forest.