How are breast cysts diagnosed?

Darcy N. Bryan, MD
OBGYN (Obstetrics & Gynecology)
Breast cysts can be detected by physical exams and other tests. In this video, Darcy Bryan, MD, of Riverside Community Hospital, explains how these cysts and their severity are diagnosed.
Johns Hopkins Medicine
Breast cysts are benign (non-cancerous) sacs filled with fluid that occur in the breast. They are more common in younger women.
If you find a lump in your breast, you should consult with a specialist.
Your doctor may perform one of the following tests to diagnose a breast cyst and rule out the possibility that the lump is actually cancerous:
  • Clinical breast exam- In this exam, your doctor will feel your breast to check for abnormalities.
  • Mammogram - This is the standard imaging tool your doctor uses to diagnose breast cancer.
  • Ultrasound - This is an imaging tool your doctor uses to detect breast abnormalities.
  • Fine needle aspiration - In this procedure, your doctor will numb the affected area with anesthesia, insert a thin needle and remove the fluid from the cyst.

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There are many key areas in the field of female reproductive system health, including menstruation, pregnancy, fertility, and menopause. As a woman, you may be concerned about other issues related to your sexual health, including ...

genital problems and sexually transmitted diseases. If you are a female that is sexually active, or over the age of 18, it is important to begin seeing a womans' health specialist in order to make sure that your reproductive system stays healthy. Before that, any concerns with menstruation should be addressed with a physician. As you get older, most women become concerned with issues pertaining to avoiding or achieving pregnancy, until menopause begins around age 50.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.