- A breast infection (mastitis) in a breastfeeding woman is treated with warm compresses and antibiotics.
- A convenient and effective way of applying heat treatment is to wet some washcloths and put them in the microwave briefly to warm them.
- Hot showers are also helpful.
- During heat treatment, the infected area can be massaged.
- After heat treatment, which helps open up the milk ducts, either nursing the baby or using a breast pump can help relieve the swelling and pain. Contrary to common myth, nursing the baby or using a breast pump is a critical part of the treatment because it helps decrease the chance of the infection progressing.
If the area actually looks red or fails to get better with heat, massage, and nursing, a doctor should be consulted for consideration of antibiotics, because mastitis can progress quickly and develop into a severe infection. Whether a woman is pregnant or not, she needs to see a doctor if the area does not return completely to normal with treatment in order to rule out more unusual types of infections. Cellulitis needs to be treated with antibiotics and frequent follow-ups with the doctor.
- An abscess of the breast often needs to be drained by a doctor because antibiotics alone cannot adequately treat an abscess.
- Fibroadenomas are usually removed because they are difficult to distinguish from cancer until they are removed.
- Breast pain (mastodynia) is a common problem. As long as no mass can be felt by the doctor or patient, and no breast lump is seen on a mammogram or ultrasound, breast pain is often concluded to be a normal condition. It is often thought that this pain is caused by natural hormonal fluctuations. If the discomfort is particularly acute and interferes excessively with a woman's life, oral contraceptives or other medications can be helpful, especially if the pain is worse around the time of the menstrual cycles.
- Fibrocystic changes do not require medication or surgery. Often, a baseline mammogram is done. Then, no further treatment is needed unless a new lump arises, in which case an evaluation with a mammogram and possibly ultrasound is necessary.
- Breast cancer requires urgent treatment. Treatment depends on the type of cancer detected, its size, and its location.
This answer should not be considered medical advice...This answer should not be considered medical advice and should not take the place of a doctor’s visit. Please see the bottom of the page for more information or visit our Terms and Conditions.
Archived: March 20, 2014
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Read the Original Article: Breast Lumps (In Women)