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Breast Health
Mammal Tissue
Breast Disorders
Breast Esthetics

Healthy, Normal Breast

a. What is breast?

Breast is an extension of the skin and is a secretory gland (such as sebaceous glands or sweat gland) that secretes milk. The germination of papillas in adolescent girls, is the first determined sexual development by inspection.
Sexual Development in Puberty:
Five main alterations are defined in puberty for boys and girls (Tanner's stages). Sexual development generally follows a certain order in both genders.  Two common physical changes appear for girls:

  • Development of breast
  • Hair growth in the pubic region

The first sign of sexual development in girls is breast growth, then an attack of length growth is seen. Shortly after, pubic and axillary hair growth are watched. Menarche is seen two years later than breast growth (thelarche). It has been reported that the age of thelarche showed a shift to earlier ages recently. The beginning of breast growth is on an avarage of 8th or 9th ages. Yet it is ordinary between the ages 8 and 13. However, the breast growth under 8 years is called an “Early breast growth”, and the breast growth over 13 years is called a  “Delayed Breast Growth”. A physician should be consulted in both situations, probable underlying reasons should be investigated and proper treatment should be begun in case a disease is present. 

Breast growth and pubic hair growth are evaluated via Tanner's stages (Figure ).

Breast growth stages of girls:
Stage 1: No breast growth.
Stage 2: Growth begins in the form of a budding on areola.
Stage 3: Growth continues on areola and mammal tissue.
Stage 4: Areola and papilla form a second process on mammal tissue.
Stage 5: Mammal tissue is enlarged. Areola is retreated and joined to the mammal tissue. Only the papilla forms a process.
(Reference: Kınık E. Adolesan dönemde fiziksel büyüme ve cinsel gelişme. Katkı Pediatri dergisi. Cilt 21, sayı 6, 726. Ankara.2000.)


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