• Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run for the Cure: Together we raised an estimated $21.5 million.

    Learn more

  • New Treatments

    I believe in the power of human creativity to conquer this disease.” - Dr. Tak Mak, leader of SU2C Canada - CBCF Breast Cancer Dream Team

    Learn More

  • Get Involved this October!

    Creating a future without breast cancer takes more than awareness, it takes ACTION! CBCF is transforming the well-known Breast Cancer Awareness Month into Breast Cancer ACTION Month.

    Learn how you can take action!

  • Vote Couture for the Cure 2015

    Cashmere Bathroom Tissue will donate $1* to the cause for each vote for your favourite creation in White Cashmere Collection! Plus, you could WIN a dream wedding gown!

    Vote Couture for the Cure now!


    Because mammograms find what you cannot, mammograms save lives. Find out more about the Foundation’s new national campaign.

    Learn more

  • New Treatments Team Grant

    The SU2C Canada – CBCF Breast Cancer Dream Team has been announced! Learn more about the plans of this world class research team for exploiting cancer’s weaknesses to treat triple-negative breast cancer and other aggressive types of breast cancer.

    Find out more

  • 1/3 of breast cancers can be prevented

    ​Learn ten other surprising facts about breast health and build your personal plan for living well.

    Create your breast health plan

  • Wall of Hope presented by CIBC

    Share your stories of inspiration, your reasons for participating, or your hopes for the future. Your message will inspire others and help us create a future without breast cancer.

    Leave a message

  • Sponge Towels Cleans for the Cause

    Our partner SpongeTowels is giving away a premium house cleaning kit every week this month, and for every contest entry, they will donate $1* to CBCF!

    Enter Clean for the Cause now

  • My Breast My Test

    These are my breasts. Shouldn’t I have a say about my test?

    Join the discussion at facebook.com/mybreastmytest. Help end the confusion around mammography screening.

    Join the conversation

  • The Pink Tour is on the road!

    The Pink Tour branded mini-van, pop-up display and three bilingual Tour reps will make over 120 stops in 80 communities across the region

    Learn more

You Are Here :
Home | Central | About Breast Cancer | Steps to Diagnosis

Upcoming Events


CIBC Run for the Cure

Across Canada

The Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation CIBC Run ...


National Lymphedema

Calgary, AB | Coast Plaza ...

We invite you to participate in the 2015 National ...

Hot Topics

Corporate Partners & Sponsors

How is Breast Cancer Diagnosed?

A breast lumpLump:
A mass that can be found in the breast or elsewhere in the body. This can also be called a nodule.
or another sign or symptom of breast cancer may be found by a screeningScreening:
The search for diseases such as breast cancer in people without symptoms. Mammography is an important tool for breast cancer screening and earlier detection.
mammogramMammogram (also called mammography):
A low-dose X-ray of the breast. It is used to take images of the breasts and is an important screening tool for the earlier detection of breast cancer.
or during a clinical breast examinationClinical breast exam (CBE):
A physical examination of the breasts by a health-care provider.
by a health care provider. You may also notice a breast change yourself by being breast aware.

However, a change to the breast does not necessarily mean that you have breast cancer. In fact, most breast changes are not breast cancer. More information is needed to properly diagnose the signs or symptoms you are experiencing.

Diagnostic Imaging and Biopsy

The first step used for diagnosis will most likely be an imaging technique, which is a way to get a better picture of what is happening in the breast. You may also need to have a biopsyBiopsy:
A procedure in which tissue samples are removed from the body for examination under a microscope to determine if cancer or other abnormal cells are present.
, where a small tissue sample is taken to be tested in a lab to see if it is cancer.

It is important to diagnose the condition promptly. If it does turn out to be breast cancer, earlier detection can lead to more treatment options and a better chance of surviving the disease.

Explore this section to learn more about the different methods used to diagnose breast cancer, including the following: