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Breast Cancer

Breast pain

03/11/2008

Question:

I have been having pain in my left breast located on the far side of my left breast and pain under the arm. I just had a mammo and sonogram this week and was reported to have dilated milk ducts in both breasts as well as fibroglandular tissue in both breasts and was negative for anything else. I continue to have pain in the breast as was told I could take Ibuprofen and use heat packs for the pain and there was nothing else to be done but I still continue to have significant pain in the left breast and I am concerned that this pain is not normal. What is the risk of cancer for women with fibroglandular tissue and is the pain anything to be concerned about?

Answer:

Breast pain is common and not usually a sign of cancer. The screening tests you have had are the correct ones. If there is any lump in the breast however, it should be biopsied, even with normal tests. Sometimes avoiding caffeine helps breast pain—try that for a few weeks. Even if everything looks normal, if the pain persists, be sure to have a follow-up appointment with your doctor (hopefully a surgeon has evaluated this problem) in about 6 weeks.

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Response by:

Paula  Silverman, MD Paula Silverman, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University