Early Detection And Screening

For Breast Cancer

Clinical Breast Examination (CBE)

  • CBE is recommended for all women once a year after 30 years of age.
  • A clinical breast exam (CBE) is an examination of your breasts by a health professional such as a doctor, a nurse or medical social worker.
  • The health professional will first look carefully at your breasts for abnormalities/changes in the nipple, skin, size or shape of the breasts. Then, using his or her fingers, the examiner will feel (palpate) your breasts for the presence of any lumps. Nipples are examined for any suspected discharge, skin changes and retraction. S/he will also examine the area under both arms for any swelling of your lymph nodes.

Breast Self-Examination (BSE)

  • You should have a clear knowledge of how your breasts look normally.
  • Feel your breasts and seek medical advice promptly if any change in the breast is noticed.
  • BSE is a suggested option for women above age 20 years to look for early signs of breast cancer.

It can be done at the comfort of your own home.

  • Women who are menstruating, every month BSE should be done 7 days/ 1 week after the menses have stopped.
  • Post menopausal, on a fine day every month.

Imaging Tests


  • Mammography is very important in taking care of yourself and your breasts. Doctors use a mammogram to look for early signs of breast cancer.
  • A mammography machine uses low-dose x-rays to take images of your breast. First, the breast is compressed between two plastic plates for a few seconds while an x-ray is taken. Then, it is repositioned (and compressed again) to take another view. This is then done on the other breast. Flattening the breast can be uncomfortable. but is needed to provide a clearer view. The entire procedure takes about 20 twenty minutes.
  • It's best to schedule your mammogram about a week after your menstrual period. Your breasts won't be as tender or swollen, which means less discomfort during the x-ray.
  • Wear a 2-piece outfit because you will need to remove your top and bra. Do not apply deodorant, antiperspirant, powder, lotion, or ointment on or around your chest on the day of your mammogram. These products can appear as white spots on the x-ray.

Breast Ultrasound

  • In this procedure, a device sends high frequency sound waves through your breast. The sound signals received from tissues are converted into pictures on computer screen. These images allow the doctor to look for any abnormality.

MRI Scan

  • In this procedure, a high-powered magnet and a computer is used to scan and to create detailed images of the breast and surrounding organs. Breast MRIs are recommended only in specific cases where mammogram information is insufficient.

For Cervical Cancer

PAP Smear Test

The Pap smear is a simple test that is done to collect a few cells from the cervix and help to diagnose precancerous and cancerous conditions of the cervix. It also aids in diagnosing infections of the lower reproductive tract.

Who should get the Pap test done?

  • As per the International recommendations, women above the age of 21 years can get the pap test.
  • If you are 30 years and above Pap test should be done once in every 3 years till you turn 65 years of age.
  • If this test is combined with HPV test, then the test may be repeated every 5 years.

Women who do not routinely require Pap test

  • Women aged less than 21 years and above 65 years
  • Women who had their womb removed for non-cancerous conditions

What is the right time for a Pap test?

  • The Pap test yields optimum results if scheduled between 10 to 20 days from the first day of menstrual period.
  • The woman should not be menstruating at the time of test.

Preparation for Pap smear
You should avoid the following for 48 hours before the Pap test:

  • Intercourse
  • Douching of vagina
  • Vaginal medications
  • Vaginal contraceptives like creams/ jellies


  • An instrument called a speculum is gently introduced into the vagina to visualize the cervix. There may be some discomfort or cramping during the procedure, but it is usually not painful.
  • A small wooden stick or spatula is used to gently scrape the surface of the lower part of the cervix to pick up cells.
  • A special brush, called a cytobrush is used to obtain cells from the inner part of the cervix.
  • The cells are placed on a glass slide, immediately fixed in ethanol and sent to laboratory for further processing and interpretation.

Visual Inspection using Acetic acid (VIA)

(lower part of womb)
Naked-eye visual inspection of the uterine cervix, after application of 5% acetic acid (VIA) provides simple test for the early detection of cervical precancerous lesions and early invasive cancer. The results of VIA are immediately available

For Oral Cancer

Many cancers of the oral cavity have a long early pre-cancer period which provide during which they may have same symptoms. Early detection of these lesions is possible during routine general health check-ups/screening by doctors/dentists/health workers (oral visual examination) or by oral self-examination.

Oral visual Self Examination

You can examine your mouth yourself by looking at your mouth with the help of mirror in bright light, for early detection of oral cancers.


  • Wash your hands thoroughly
  • Explore your mouth with your finger
  • Tilt your head back; examine the roof of your mouth for any abnormal thickening.
  • Pull the cheeks on one side at a time, inspect the inner surface and back of the gums.
  • Pull out your tongue and hold it with finger upwards, inspect and feel the floor of the mouth and look carefully at the tongue.
  • Feel on both sides of the neck for any lump or enlarged lymph nodes.
  • If you detect any abnormality, bring it to the notice of your doctor for further evaluation.

General physical Oral examination

A thorough history is taken before the examination regarding duration and frequency of tobacco use in any form like cigarette, beedi, chewing pan, gutka, khaini etc and of alcohol consumption

Oral examination

  • A careful examination of entire inner cavity of the mouth which includes the roof of mouth, back of the throat, and inside of cheeks and lips is then carried out.
  • The doctor looks for red or white patches or any other abnormal areas over head, neck or face.He/she also examines for any lumps, swelling or any other problem with the nerves of mouth or face.
  • If any abnormal area is found during examination, it is confirmed by further tests which are detailed below.

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