Breast Abscess In Lactating Mothers

One of the common complaint or medical issue seen in lactating women is the – Breast Abscess. In this article I will explain in detail about breast abscess and its symptoms. Those reading about breast abscess must surely know about mastitis.

Mastitis is a form of breast engorgement (painful swelling) which results due to a plugged duct. It can happen in the right or left and sometimes in both the breasts. An untreated mastitis or an unsuccessfully treated mastitis can progress into an abscess. As a result of this a part of the breast gets filled with pus due to heavy infection resulting in killing-pain and fever.

Symptoms of breast abscess – While feeding your baby, if you ever notice cuts or abrasions on your nipple (with or without blood) which gets quite painful during the feeding episodes, then you are in danger of getting mastitis or an abscess. Breast abscess originates from this stage and progresses on to a stage where pain gets unbearable.

As you continue to avoid getting medically treated and continue breast feeding your baby infection sets in and pain in your breasts gets unbearable. The area surrounding the nipple or the infected part of the breasts gets swollen and reddened. This is the second visible symptom of breast abscess.

Once you have crossed the mastitis stage, you can generally feel feverish quite often. The fever is usually accompanied with chills and shivers. Though, after some rest (or after taking a paracetamol tablet) and in an hour or two the fever subsides and you feel healthy again. But this is not so with breast abscess, as you are bound to get such fever episodes frequently.

This is the third symptom of getting a breast abscess. Some women also notice sharp pain on their back during this period. Usually you will notice that the area on your back just opposite to your breast gets reddened and pains a lot.

This is the fourth symptom of breast abscess.  The final symptom of breast abscess usually relates to pain in your lymph nodes (as a result of swelling) especially under your arm pits. Well, in general breast abscess is a serious condition and everything related to it is very painful. The longer you try to avoid getting treated; the dangerous will be the consequences.

To avoid getting breast abscess, avoid direct breast feeding to your baby when there is a cut or abrasion on your nipple or when breast feeding gets painful. You can rather express milk by hand or using a breast pump and feed your baby as per the schedule till your nipple gets healed. Avoid getting breast abscess because it will surely leave a lasting & painful mark in your life.

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