5 Step Breast Exam

Posted: Friday October 21 2016

By: Guest Blogger

5 Step Breast Exam

By Breast Cancer Haven

October marks Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a worldwide annual campaign that brings together hundreds of organisations with the intention of emphasising breast awareness and raising vital funds. Here at Breast Cancer Haven, we want to use October not only to increase awareness of our services in Yorkshire, so more people can access our support, but also to inform people about breast cancer and how you can self-examine, with a simple 5 step breast exam.

Every year, more than 50,000 women are diagnosed with breast cancer in the UK. In addition to this, around 400 men are diagnosed annually. Self-examinations are extremely important in order to increase the likelihood of noticing any changes at the earliest opportunity. If you do spot anything different, you should speak to your GP as soon as possible.


There are five simple steps to a breast self-examination and it is best to try to complete one every month.  It is best to do the check a few days after your period; however it’s still important to continue with the examinations even if you’ve stopped having periods.

Step 1

Stand in from of the mirror with your arms raised above your head and look for any changes in colour, shape, skin puckering, nipple changes, rash or swelling.

Step 2

Put your hands on your hips and repeat step one.

Step 3

Check for any fluid coming out of your nipple.

Step 4

Whilst lying down, use your right hand to feel the left breast. Use a little pressure and feel the whole breast, including the nipple and under the arm pit. Repeat this using your left hand to feel your right breast.

Step 5

Feel your breast while you are standing or sitting as in Step 4. You may find this easier in the shower or bath.

Breast Cancer Haven helps anyone affected by breast cancer.  We support both women and men and no referral is needed to visit us.  Some Visitors come to us at the point of diagnosis, some come during treatment, and some come after the cancer has gone but the emotional side effects are still with them.   A free personalised programme of support is created for each Visitor and we want to make sure that everyone affected gets the help they need.

We don’t receive any government funding so Breast Cancer Haven is completely reliant on donations to deliver our vital services.  We are running 31 fundraising activities during October, one for each day of the month, to raise funds and spread the message about the support available here in Yorkshire.  As part of the activities we are hosting an Enchanted Ball at Oulton Hall on Saturday 22 October and it would be wonderful to welcome as many people to this special evening as possible.  Tickets are £45 each to include a welcome drink, delicious 3 course meal and live entertainment throughout the night and individual tickets of tables of 10 or 12 are available.

For any more information about Breast Cancer Haven’s support or fundraising events, please call 0113 284 7829 or email yorkshirereception@breastcancerhaven.org.uk.

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5 step breast exam

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