- by Motherhood Hospital
- 1 Shares
- Dec 08 2017
Mammary Duct Ectasia: Symptoms and Causes-By Dr. Asha Hiremath.
It is a benign breast condition that occurs when a milk duct in the breast widens and its walls thicken. This can cause the duct to become blocked and lead to fluid build-up. It is more common in women who are getting close to menopause. It is also called as mammary duct ectasia or periductal mastitis.
Experts don’t know what exactly causes it. It occurs by normal breast changes that happen with age. Breasts are made up of lobules and ducts which are surrounded by granular, fibrous and fatty tissue. As women get nearer to the menopause and the breast age the ducts behind the nipple shorten and widen. This is called duct ectasia.
- A dirty white, greenish or black nipple discharge from one or both nipples.
- Tenderness in the nipple or surrounding breast tissue.
- Redness of the nipple and sometimes the surrounding area.
- A breast lump or thickening near the clogged duct.
- A nipple that’s turned inward (inverted).
- A bacterial infection may develop in the affected milk duct, sometimes causing pain in or around the nipple.
- Ultrasound of the nipple and areola.
- Ductal lavage and cytology
Mammary duct ectasia doesn’t always require treatment. If symptoms bother, treatment may include:
- Pain medication
- A warm compress applied to your nipple and surrounding area may soothe painful breast tissue.
- Using breast pads or nursing pads can keep fluid leaking through your clothing.
- Chose bras with good support to minimize breast discomfort.
- Avoid sleeping on the same side of your body as your affected breast to help prevent swelling and further discomfort.
- Smoking may make it harder to treat an infection, and ongoing smoking may result in recurrent infections or an abscess.
“Having duct ectasia doesn’t increase your risk of developing cancer in the future.”
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