Mammary duct ectasia is a condition affecting the subareolar periductal (a region underneath the nipple region on breasts. At the point when the ducts expand, they may contain calcium collection, cholesterol crystals and protein discharges. This creates an inflammatory response, which may result in discharge from the nipples.

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Unending periductal inflammation with fibrosis is some pathological changes that occur in mammary duct ectasia. Inspissation of discharge and formation inside the expanded ducts and later calcification of ductal substance takes place. A connection between ductal ectasia and smoking has been revealed time and again.

Whenever left untreated, mammary duct ectasia can in the end prompt the annihilation of a mammary duct. In any case, in the initial period it makes the terminal ducts enlarged.

What Are The Complications Of Mammary Duct Ectasia?

The following are the possible minor complications of mammary duct ectasia as there are no serious complications:

In the beginning it may not be considered as serious but in the event that mammary duct ectasia leads to bloody discharge, it will have to be dealt with surgery.

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Mammary duct ectasia can discharge a dense gooey substance which resembles lotion. It can cause irritation, swollen nipples and pain.

A bacterial infection known as periductal mastitis occurs and resolution of this condition without treatment is not really a likely event.

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The term 'plasma cell mastitis' additionally will in general allude to the further developed phases of the condition where there is development of a pseudo mass.

While some might be worried that it can lead to breast cancer, mammary duct ectasia does not increase your chances of being affected by breast cancer.

Breast cancer is the consequence of a gene mutation which is usually inherited. What will in general occur, in any case, is that females who are as of now at a risk because of occurrence of breast cancer in the family are in a state of panic when a lump or discharge occurs.

Treatment options for this condition include antibiotics, pain medication and surgery. Antibiotics would be prescribed for around 10 days to a fortnight to treat any infections that might have been found as a result of mammary duct ectasia and completing the medicine course even if you have been relieved to a great extent is important with antibiotics. Pain medication could be prescribed to relieve you of the discomfort that ectasia causes. If the initial antibiotics and self-care are not fruitful doctors may suggest removing the affected duct through surgery, but this only happens in rare cases where there is no option left.

Mammary duct ectasia is more commonly found in women in the age 48-62 age group around menopause. Its symptoms are nipple retraction, a mass that is palpable, pain and nipple discharge.

The exact cause of mammary duct ectasia is yet to be found but alteration in the breast tissue composition due to aging has been considered as a reason. These alterations may cause a clogged mammary duct and the associated inflammation of the tissues.

Another cause is nipple inversion which could block these ducts and lead to infection and pain. An inversion may also mean cancer and it is better to get yourself checked in either case.

Mammary duct ectasia can be found with clinical examination and some information from you in most occurrences. The doctors will ask you about how your symptoms have panned out over time, the period of time since you have had the symptoms, about occurrence of pain, fever, and some questions regarding breast cancer. Depending on the information provided by you and the physical examination’s findings, some tests might be further required including a diagnostic mammography and a diagnostic ultrasound.

With regards to screening, duct ectasia is something that frequently appears as a cylindrical mass underneath the areola on a clinical exam. Mammography shows the presence of branches in region behind the nipple. Ultrasounds show debris formed due to fluid filled in ducts and mimic a tumor but it is not breast cancer.

Duct ectasia is benign and happens after menopause, and breast implants have been considered a contributing factor to causing it.

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD,FFARCSI

Pain Assist Inc.

Last Modified On: November 27, 2018

This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer

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