What Every Woman Needs to Know

Understanding your breasts

The breasts are actually glands, though we don’t usually think of them this way. Like other glands, they have a function: to prepare, store and dispense milk. What would you see if you could look inside your breasts?

Each breast is cushioned by a layer of fat, beneath which rests 15 to 20 lobes, comprised of smaller sections called lobules. Milk ducts are thin tubes that connect the lobules to the lobes and carry milk to the nipple when a woman is breastfeeding.

External Resources

Understanding Breast Cancer Treatment: A Guide for Patients, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute.
Understanding Breast Changes, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute.
A Woman’s Guide to Breast Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment, California Department of Health Services.