Mammary duct ectasia is a condition of the mammary glands that happens from the blockage or obstruction of the lactiferous or milk ducts below the nipple. In this condition the milk duct gets widened and shortened. As a result, fluid gets accumulated in the duct leading to a blockage and swelling. This causes irritation in the duct. iI is a non-cancerous condition and it does not increase your risk of getting cancer.
How Do You Treat Mammary Duct Ectasia?
Mammary duct ectasia generally does not require any treatment and it gets better on its own. However, if it does not go away and causes some real trouble, or it progresses to an infection or an abscess, it might need some treatment to help you get better.
Some of the treatment options may be as follows
- A physician may prescribe an antibiotic if there is an infection caused as a result of mammary duct ectasia
- In spite of getting results after starting the antibiotics, it is important to continue all the medications for the recommended time period
- Antibiotics should never be stopped randomly
- As the ducts are swollen, there may be some pain and soreness in the area of the affected nipple and the areola
- Taking an anti-inflammatory and an analgesic may give you some relief from pain and inflammation, thereby soothing your sore breast
- Surgery may be required if the above treatments do not work
- This may be done in two ways
- Microdochectomy-in this method, one of the milk ducts is removed
- Total duct excision-in this method all the milk ducts may be removed
- The surgery may be done as an OPD procedure or a minimal hospital stay of one day may be required
Some home remedies can be considered o relieve the milder symptoms of mammary duct ectasia. These home remedies are-
A Warm Compress
- If the affected breast is painful, applying a warm compress on the affected area may help relieve you from the pain and soothe the sore breast tissue in mammary duct ectasia.
- A supporting bra can help by providing the support that your breasts need and thus soothe the sore breasts in mammary duct ectasia
- Also, a loose bra cannot keep a nursing pad in place, a well-fitting and supporting bra can provide you with support as well as keep the nursing pads in place
Breast Pads For Discharge
- The discharge from the affected breast can be quite frustrating, troublesome and embarrassing, particularly if it makes your dress wet and stained in mammary duct ectasia
- This can be taken care of by wearing soft breast pads or nursing pads so that the pads absorb any discharge and it does not show up on your clothes
- These nursing pads or breast pads can be easily obtained from a medical store or a baby store
- Sleeping on the opposite side as to that of the affected breast may help alleviate the swelling and discomfort associated with mammary duct ectasia.
- Smoking has been linked to widening and shortening of lactiferous ducts according to some studies
- Those women with a habit of smoking are more at a risk of getting mammary duct ectasia
- Also, it is a lot difficult to treat any infection in the body if smoking is ongoing, as smoking makes it terribly difficult to get any infection treated by interfering with the treatment methods and medicines
- Also, smoking is a potential risk factor for such recurrent infections as mammary duct ectasia
Mammary duct ectasia is a non-cancerous condition of the breasts and is usually seen to be affecting ladies of the menopausal age. It usually does not require any treatment and subsides on its own. However, in some instances when the treatment is needed, there are certain methods that can be followed to get the desired relief. If the condition is causing more trouble, it is best to seek immediate medical attention.