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Dry itchy nipples. Discharge on scratching. Eczema?

Answered by
Dr. Radhika

General & Family Physician

Practicing since :2005

Answered : 436 Questions

Posted on Thu, 28 Jun 2012 in Dry Skin
Question: My nipples were dry and I itched them so much that I might have scratched them raw. They are really sensitive now and slightly red and clear liquid is oozing out which gets annoying everytime it dries and becomes crusty. Is is getting worse? Whats going on? What can I do? Im a bit worried. They say it might be caused by or if you have enzemza and that is a condition i have.
Answered by Dr. Radhika 54 minutes later

Thanks for the query.

In all likelihood, you are suffering from eczema of the nipples. Due to constant itching and scratching, the skin has been inflamed due to which it has become red, sore and is oozing fluid.
Other possibilities include a reaction to a new material, an allergy to some detergent and the jog bra syndrome. The latter causes the nipples to dry and the whole itch-scratch cycle starts again.

The following measures will help:
a.     Only wear cotton innerwear
b.     You can apply Nipcare cream immediately over the area after cleansing it properly with warm water and savlon.
c.     Also use Benadryl syrup 2 tsp twice daily for 5 days to stop the itching.

As I believe the more information a person gives the better is the doctor's reply, please do not mind in answering the following:
1. Do you have any redness, dimpling or swelling of the breast area?
2. Is there any pain in the breast and nipple area?
3. Is there any other colour discharge from the nipples and has there been any changes in the colour of the areola?

It would also be useful if you can upload an image of the lesion. You can use the “Upload your reports” feature on the right.

Hope I have answered your query. I will be available for follow up queries.

Wish you good health.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Aparna Kohli
Follow up: Dr. Radhika 5 hours later
Thank you for answering Dr. Radhika!
This has put some of my worries to rest.
Aside Nipcare, are there any other creams or lotions you can recommend?

As for your questions:
1. I have no swelling, redness, or dimpling anywhere else on the breast area.
2. There is no other pains on the breast or nipple area aside the nipples being very sensitive to the touch.
3. No, there is no other colour discharge from the nipples or colour changes of the areola.

The bras I wear aren't new, but do you think that the real cause could be new sweaters and shirts that I am wearing over them? Like an allergic reaction of my body to the material? Aside from the itchy nipples...everytime I shower, I am very is this all caused by my enzema reacting?

Also, what can I do about the oozing fluid?
Answered by Dr. Radhika 9 hours later
Thanks for the follow up.

Yes, there is a possibility it could be due to the new shirt or sweater you wear. Always before wearing a shirt you should rinse in water first. Also generally in cold weather there is possibility of dry weather causing itching due to dryness too.

Also you should observe if you lately have eaten anything that is causing this kind of allergy. If you are finding itching every time you shower it might be something you are using like a soap, shampoo etc..

For the oozing fluid wipe the nipple with a antiseptic solution like savlon and apply a dressing over the area like cotton with betadine ointment and then close with a thin bandage. Change this twice daily till the oozing stops. Apply Lansinoh ointment over the area.

If it is due to any new soap, detergent, food you are eating, you should avoid it. Apply calamine lotion over the entire body if it is itching.

Hope I have answered your query. I will be available for follow up queries.

Wish you good health.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Raju A.T

The User accepted the expert's answer

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