I am 40 years of age. I had tubal ligation 10 years ago. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in my right breast 8 years ago. After I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I underwent surgery and my right breast was removed. I had noticed some white coloured discharge from my nipples, when my breast cancer was diagnosed 8 years ago. But now the problem is that, recently I have again noticed some white or watery discharge from my left breast nipple. I am worried and concerned, if again I am developing any cancer in my left breast. Another problem is that, my periods have been regular till now, but this month my period has been delayed by ten days. I am worried, if I am pregnant but my pregnancy test result is negative. Please guide me.
Answer (by Dr. Neelam Dhamija): Irregularity of periods and discharge from the nipples can be due to hormonal disturbance, which can occur at your age. So you can get few blood tests done for prolactin, thyroid, FSH and beta hCG level in your blood. These are all hormone test. Get one ultrasound of your pelvic or lower abdomen to see ovaries and CT scan abdomen, if needed. Prolactin is a hormone; its raised value in the blood, more than 29 ng/ml, can cause galactorrhoea (milk secretion not due to breast feeding), irregular or no menstrual period. Disturbance in the level of Thyroid hormones can also cause menstrual irregularities. FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) level in the blood can give an idea if you have poly cystic ovarian disease, or value of more than 25miu/ml can indicate if you are approaching menopause. Beta hCG level in blood can confirm whether you are pregnant or not, if the value is less than 5miu/ml then you are not pregnant and value more than 25miu/ml will mean pregnancy.
For more details, please read: How can I know that I am pregnant? What is Pregnancy Test? Hormonal disturbances can be corrected by giving medicines. To rule out the possibility of breast cancer, please consult a doctor. She will do your breast examination, to find out any tumour mass in your breast. If needed, your doctor will advise you mammography.