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Breast Cancer

Breast changes in older women

06/21/2007

Question:

How common is it for a woman in her late 50`s or early 60`s to get cysts or fibronomas or fibrocystic disease when she`s only had a couple of cysts in her lifetime. Does a woman`s breast get smoother with no lumps as she ages. And can you only develop fibrocystic disease in one breast and is there pain or no pain with it.

Answer:

Fibrocystic disease can happen at any time in a woman’s life, as can cyst develop at any time. However, these cysts are much more common in younger women than in older. As women get older their breasts become more fatty and less glandular, so lumps may become easier to feel. As for getting fibrocystic disease in one breast and not the other, this is a diagnosis made by biopsy only. If a woman is told she has fibrocystic disease based on her mammogram or her physical exam findings, this is inaccurate and incorrect.

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Response by:

Jennifer B Manders, MD Jennifer B Manders, MD
Formerly:
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati