What causes swelling and tenderness of breasts and lump near nipple?

Posted on Mon, 10 Nov 2014 in Lump
Question: Hi, I am a 41 year old female about two weeks ago I started to feel swelling & tenderness in both breasts, I did a self breast exam and found a small lump under my nipple in my right breast I also have a stinging pain coming from the lump radiating under my arm. Yesterday I went to Dr. and she referred me to get an ultrasound and mammogram next wednesday. I am very scared and Wednesday seems like a million years away. I was hoping you could give me some clarity on what this could be.
Answered by Dr. T Chandrakant 34 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Relax, most probably Fibro-adenosis

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your query and an elucidate history.
I can understand the plight you are going through.

First of all, let me tell you that the the symptoms you have mentioned are not seen in cancer. Cancer is always painless in the beginning. Never occur in both the breasts simultaneously.

The swelling and tenderness in both the breasts with a small lump under the nipple in right breast and a stinging pain coming from the lump radiating to the underarm are more suggestive of hormonal change related problem which can occur at your age. Most of the times this can be due to a condition called
fibro-adenosis, a benign ( means non-cancerous) condition where the lumps can not be felt by the flat of the hand. They may be felt by pinching ( pressing sideways) so are easily missed. Sometimes they are related to the menstrual cycle and usually more affected just before the menses.

Ultrasonography and mammography are done to confirm this and to rule out cancer, which I have a feeling is going to be fibroadenosis and not a cancer as per the history you have provided.

You may also request for FNAC- Fine Needle Aspiration Cytology to confirm the diagnosis.

I hope your Doctor must have given you some medicines. Please take them if and as advised, get relaxed. Wednesday is not far away and hope for the best.
Take low salt diet, use breast supporting undergarment ( bra ), relax completely as anxiety and stress adds to the pain.

Please keep me posted about the progress and the reports.
Please free to ask for more if you need to.
Wishing you an early recovery.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Answered by
Dr. T Chandrakant

General Surgeon

Practicing since :1984

Answered : 17965 Questions


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