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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Is a black nipple discharge indicative of breast cancer?

Answered by
Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein

General Surgeon

Practicing since :2008

Answered : 11322 Questions

Posted on Fri, 10 Nov 2017 in General Health
Question: Hello my name is Toni and I was at my doctor the other day for nipple discharge that only comes out if I squezze it out, now I have been lactating for years after my daughters birth and always came out white, now it comes out white and like a very dark green to black. My doctor told me right away without ANY testing that I have breast cancer and to expect the worst news. I have NO OTHER symptoms of breast cancer. HOW can he just say this without proper testing and tell me to expect the worse? It comes out white just as if I were breastfeeding and out of 1 tiny hole in my nipple comes out green/black and this is in both breasts. I really need some answers and what to do I am so scared and confused.
Thank You!!
Answered by Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 1 hour later
Brief Answer:
no need to be scared

Detailed Answer:
Hi and welcome to HCM.

First, these are not typical signs of breast cancer and if you ask me, breast cancer is not the first thing to think of at this point. Cancer is rarely manifested with such leakage unless in advanced stages of diseases, but in this case before any leak, you would feel lump and have some other symptoms.
Some doctors like to mention the worst so that patient do required tests and this has beneficial effect on patients's cooperation. But I dont think that this was necessary in your case and to say that this is cancer without biopsy, is a bit too much and very unprofessional.

Of course, in some cases, there may be coincidence of such nipple discharge and cancer, this cant be ruled out fpr 100%, but as I said, in these cases, there is most probably breast fibroma, glandular hypertrophy, abscess, infection, fibroadenoma or proliferation of mild producing tissue. Some hormonal changes may lead to this as well.

So, you should calm down at this point and do breast ultrasound and mamography. If there will be some suspicious lesions seen, then biopsy can be taken or abscess can be drained. Otherwise, you can do hormonal tests and have antibiotic course and it will heal.

Wish you good health. Regards

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Raju A.T
Follow up: Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 3 hours later
Thank you very much for your response, I do have testing to do and I will have them all done. I thought it was very unprofessional myself after I got home and thought about it, but I feel better now that you cleared some things up for me and I am very grateful for that. I think in my best interest is once the tests are done would be to find a new doctor. I have one other question, back in XXXXXXX I had fell pretty hard on my tailbone and made an appointment with my Doctor. While I was there he told me to undress from the waist down, said he wanted to check my tailbone so I did. He instructed me to lay on the table(I still had my underwear on and my best friend was there) I thought he was going to check my tailbone, but before I had a chance to say anything he pulled my underwear aside and started to give me a pelvic exam. I was horrified, because my best friend was right there and he did not use a sheet or anything. I was so shocked I couldnt speak. He said it was the best way check it. I found it very disturbing. Are there certain rules he needs to adhere to?
Answered by Dr. Ivan R. Rommstein 8 hours later
Brief Answer:

Detailed Answer:
You are welcome.
I am sure that your breast issue will be cleared out.
Regarding tailbone hit, it is always necessary to do digitorectal exam to verify possible rectal injury or tailbone fracture and dislocation. Of course, it shoul dbe done gently and with lubrication and patient should be warned before doing it. I hope that you wont have unpleasant situations with this doctor anymore.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Kampana

The User accepted the expert's answer

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