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Developed a problem of abscess in left breast after giving birth of a baby. Having abdominal pain

Mar 2016
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Practicing since : 2011
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Hello, my wife is 28 years have first child a baby boy of 2 years and 4 now.
After 2 months of giving birth to that baby boy in November 2009 she has developed a problem of abscess in her left breast. It occurred due to blockage of milk glands. After taking antibiotics for a week or so, she has got operated for the same to drain out the abscess.
FIRSTLY Now we are about to plan our 2nd child, so, we are worrying about the same problem if it occurs again in her breast. How this can be avoided or what precautions she need.

SECONDLY before her 1st pregnancy she was having healthy period cycle of exactly 30 days which use to be for 3-4 days. BUT after pregnancy she is having periods after 26-28 days ALONG WITH THAT she remains uneasy unlike other for those 4-5 days like having slight cramps & litter pain in lower side of abdomen. MOREOVER exactly in the middle of her period cycle she again feels uneasy for 2/3 days in the middle of her period cycle.

Kindly advice on the BOTH issues...
Posted Thu, 28 Mar 2013 in Women's Health
Answered by Dr. S Patra 3 hours later

Thanks for writing to us. I am giving answer as per your concern.

Firstly, breast abscess or puerperal mastitis (inflammatory condition of breast) is quite common in lactation period for some women and mostly occurs due to not taking breast care properly or infection through cracked nipple. Blockage of milk duct or gland also causes the same.

Breast Care to be taken in following ways:

1) During pregnancy- inverted nipple is common problem due to loosening of fibrous band with hormonal changes. She may need to erect nipple by hand or use breast shell by attaching with supportive bra. Also regular breast cleaning is advisable with plain water only.

2) During lactation or after child birth:

a) Frequent emptying of both breast by breast feeding in proper technique. Herein, continuous breast feeding is very much beneficial to mother and prevents from engorged breast or blocked gland.
b) Drink more water/ fluids to stay hydrated and take healthy diet with consuming more vegetables & fruits in that time period.
c) In case of breast engorgement, breast massage and hot compression before each feeding can help in unblocking the ducts and get relief some. In severe cases, cold compression is preferable. Milk expression can be practiced in some cases by hands or pump.
d) Take care about sore or cracked nipple that has significant role in bacterial infection. Proper cleaning is mandatory before & after each breast feeding. Use only plain water for cleaning and not to be used soap/ lotion/cream over nipple as they may cause drying & cracking nipples.
e) She will wear only loose fitted nursing bras and avoid wearing bras with under wiring as this can cause blocked ducts and mastitis.

Second thing, normal physiological menstrual cycle occurs every 28 days interval and it varies from woman to woman. We consider as a normal thing if period occurs in between 21-35 days. In that sense, her menstrual cycle is normal & perfect and you have nothing to worry.

Slight abdominal cramp in mid cycle is quite common and it occurs due to ovulation. It is good sign for fertility.

In addition, mild abdominal cramp prior to commence period is quite natural & normal thing. In case of persistent cramp, she may take anti spasmodic medication like drotaverine or mefenamic acid to get some relief.

Hope I have answered your query. If you have any further questions I will be happy to help.

Wish her good health and take care of her.

Dr Soumen
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Developed a problem of abscess in left breast after giving birth of a baby. Having abdominal pain 2 days later
Thanks for reply. Sir, i would like to know that what will be the consequences if we go for 2nd child.

1. Will she be able to feed that child if we start planning now. It will be delivered at the time when almost 3 years would have been elapsed from the delivery of 1st one.

2. IF YES, than what precautions should we take so that no such abscess type of thing may happen.

3. If same type of blockage happens and will there be any other alternative other than operation to avoid the substance becoming abscess.

4. What tonic she should start before conceiving. because her diet is not that good. Just Ok.

Answered by Dr. S Patra 2 hours later

Thanks for follow up query. I am trying to give answer as per your concern.

1) First of all, you do not need to be afraid about this as it is not a transferable diseases or condition to next pregnancy. So, you can plan for 2nd child and she definitely can feed her child.

2) I have already mentioned what precautions should be taken by her during pregnancy & lactation in my earlier reply. So, she must follow them strictly.

3) Breast abscess occurs in rare occasion and mostly due to not maintaining hygiene while breast feeding. She must take care of her breasts during lactation period and if again same blockage occurs, proper antibiotic therapy, hot or cold compression and milk expression is needed to avoid breast abscess. In such cases, rarely operation is required and I can tell you that she was unlucky in that period.
Keep good faith and think positively without any panic.

4) No tonic is required before conceiving. She must take healthy diet XXXXXXX in protein, XXXXXXX vegetables. She will take more fresh or dry fruits and drink more water/ juice along with diets. She can take good health drinks additionally.

In addition, Vitamin E & Folic acid supplements are must required for at least 3 months in pre and post conceptional period. It will help to develop fetal nervous system properly in early week of pregnancy.

Hope, I have clarified everything. If you do not have any clarifications, you can close the discussion and rate the answer.

Wish her good health and don't be much worried. Just start planning for next child with a new spirit and always hope for the best.

You can directly consult with me, by visiting my profile on WWW.WWWW.WW and press the button "ask me a question".

Good luck.

Dr Soumen.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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