An Overview of Mammary Duct Ectasia Pt. 2


Please note that the previously mentioned conditions cannot be categorized as typical complications because they are just the outcome of the disease. Moreover, they can vary from one person to another. Unless you have found a hard lump near the affected nipple, it is unlikely that this condition indicates cancer. Always consult your doctor regarding diagnosis and treatment options.

Diagnosis and Treatment

To confirm mammary duct ectasia, a physical exam is done along with some additional tests such as an ultrasound and a diagnostic mammography. In the former, sound waves are used to inspect the milk ducts beneath the nipple and evaluate the area under suspicion. An Ultrasound helps the doctor to determine the extent of mammary duct ectasia as well. This helps them recommend the right mode of treatment for the condition. Diagnostic mammography involves X-ray of a specific part of the breast for detailed evaluation. It will highlight the infected milk duct beneath your affected nipple.

There is no specific treatment for mammary duct ectasia because it usually improves on itself with time. Yet if the symptoms are persistent and are causing continuous discomfort, then a few treatment options can be devised for the patient. Usually, the doctors at women’s community healthcare centers.prescribe an antibiotic for 10 to 14 days to treat the infection caused by mammary duct ectasia. After consulting with the doctor the patients can take mild painkillers, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain relief.

In case the medications do not relieve the pain and inflammation, a surgery may be recommended to remove the affected milk duct beneath the nipple. During the procedure, a tiny incision is made near the affected area beside the nipple. Then, with the help of specialized equipment, the blocked mammary duct is removed. However, surgery is very rarely required as a treatment for mammary duct ectasia.

Home Remedies

  • Apply a warm compress to soothe the painful area around your nipples. You can use a soft cloth dipped in warm water for that.
  • Use breast pads for nipple discharges, which are readily available at any local drugstore near you.
  • Choose a good and supporting bra that keeps the breast pad in place and avoid leakage of any nipple discharge.
  • Sleep on the side of the breast that is not affected to avoid restlessness.
  • Stop smoking and excessive use of alcohol. These can prolong the period of an infection and can also cause recurrent infections or abscess.

For more information, consult your doctor. If you are in need of care, visit a community healthcare center or womens clinic near you.

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    About the Author

    Dr. Ghassan M. Al-Jazayrly, MD

    A graduate of University of Aleppo Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Al-Jazayrly or, as he is colloquially known: Dr. AJ, is an oncologist and hematologist of a Complete Care Community Health Center (CCCHC) with more than 36 years of experience. In recent years, he’s been involved with a non profit organization known as Every Woman Counts (EWC) which provides free breast and cervical cancer screening and diagnostic services to California’s underserved populations in order to eliminate health disparities for low-income individuals.

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