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    Get Well Informed on Breast Infection

    Here you can get all the information you need on breast infection. Learn more about a painful phenomenon called mastitis that affects many women after childbirth.

    Mastitis is an inflammation of the breasts and is most likely to develop during breastfeeding. The infection causes pain, swelling, redness and an increased temperature of a breast. Mastitis often develops within one to three months period after childbirth and can be caused by bacteria transmitted to glandular tissue from the baby?s mouth. It can also develop in women who didn?t give birth or after menopause. Blocked milk ducts cause a painful area in a breast and appear like hard cords along the surface of the breast.

    Mastitis and inverted nipples
    Women who undergo surgery due to inverted nipples are also often affected by mastitis. In the procedure, a cosmetic surgeon cuts lobules (milk forming gland) so that they're no longer connected with their ducts, located underneath a nipple. There are two possible methods of the procedure. In the first method, a surgeon cuts all lobules, and in the second method, which is less risky as well as less effective, a surgeon cuts only a part of lobules. For that reason, the procedure isn?t recommended to women who don?t have children.

    Causes of mastitis

    The bacteria in the child?s mouth or on the surface of a nipple can enter milk ducts through small cracks on the surface of the nipple and grow rapidly inside a breast. This can cause a mild inflammation or a deep infection, or an abscess may form. The condition often also includes high fever, but the latter shouldn?t exceed 39?C or last more than 4-16 hours. In most cases, mastitis only develops in one breast and not in both breasts. Aside from the influence of bacteria, a breast infection can also be a result of a large amount of milk in lobules that haven?t been emptied quickly enough or in full. The condition is caused by breastfeeding too seldom, by narrow milk ducts, physical and psychological burden on a mother and the pressure on the breasts because of a bra that is too tight. Blocked milk ducts cause pain and hard breasts. Chronic mastitis is developed by women who don?t breastfeed. After menopause, a breast infection can be a result of a chronic inflammation of the milk ducts located underneath a nipple. Hormone changes can cause a blockage of these milk ducts with dead skin, which exposes a breast to bacterial infections.

    In addition to pain, redness and high fever, mastitis can also produce symptoms such as swollen breasts, muscle aches, exhaustion, a constant feeling of fatigue, a blockage of a breast, fever and shivers. Mastitis can sometimes be additionally complicated by an abscess in a breast. The lumps that aren?t cancerous or harmful are tender and can be moved under the skin. The lumps are dangerous if they don?t disappear or don?t diminish after breastfeeding, if an abscess appears on a nipple, or if the symptoms don?t disappear after 2-3 days of treatment.

    Treatment of breast infection

    Mastitis is often treated with antibiotics. It?s important that you breastfeed every day and empty the infected breast despite pain. Namely, this prevents worsening the condition. You can also use a breast pump with the help of which you?ll empty your infected breast more easily. In alleviating pain, it?s often recommended that women heat the infected breast with a hot compress. Such a compress is used to massage the painful breast before and after breastfeeding, and several times a day, it?s recommended to have a hot bath and massage your breast in the direction of the nipple. It?s also recommended to rest, drink water (at least 10 cups a day) and eat a healthy diet, since dehydration and poor nutrition can make you feel worse. To avoid mastitis after childbirth, breastfeed from both breasts, regularly empty your breasts, drink plenty of water and take care for the hygiene of your baby as well as your hand and nipples.


    If you have an abscess, it has to be drained. Under general anaesthesia, a doctor performs the procedure under the skin by using an injection, or making a small cut on the breast. In the event that an abscess is located deeper inside a breast, an operation is often required. This is performed under the influence of general anaesthesia to minimize pain. Although mastitis doesn?t cause cancer, your doctor might nevertheless advise you to make a mammogram appointment before any procedure. In any case, follow the instructions and advice of your doctor.

  2. #2
    Itchy Netizen
    Join Date
    Oct 2016
    This is good information, thanks!



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