Because of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Welsh Government advised that some screening programmes take a pause from sending new invitations or reminders, including breast screening.
We are now planning for the restart of the programme. We are starting by sending our invitations to higher risk women during the month of July. These are women who are usually seen more often because of a specific family history or previous findings.
We will need to make some changes to our mobile units to make sure we meet Coronavirus infection control guidelines. These will need to be in place before we can start to send out more of our routine invitations. We hope to be able to invite women due and overdue routine invitations towards the end of the summer. However, it will take many months for us to catch up and many women may receive their invitations later than they would expect.
So that we can keep social distancing and allow time for cleaning between women, we will not be able to see as many women in each clinic as we did before. As we have far fewer appointments, it is particularly important that we know as soon as possible if you cannot attend so we can offer that appointment to someone else.
We are working hard to get screening back up and running as safely as possible for women we invite and for our staff. We thank you for your patience.
If you get to know how your breasts normally look and feel, you will be more likely to spot any changes that could be signs of breast cancer.
This is important even if you have been for breast screening.
Look out for the following:
• A lump or thickening in the breast.
• A change in the nipple. The nipple might be pulled back into the breast, or change shape. You might have a rash that makes the nipple look red and scaly, or have blood or another fluid coming from the nipple.
• A change in how the breast feels or looks. It may feel heavy, warm or uneven, or the skin may look dimpled. The size and shape of the breast may change.
• Pain or discomfort in the breast or armpit.
• A swelling or lump in the armpit.
If you have any change to your breast, you should make an appointment to see your GP straight away.