After my first breast operation I was told that I had cystic mastitis. What does that really mean?

This is a general term for poorly understood changes in the ducts of the breast. It is not an infection, although the terminology suggests that it is. Cystic mastitis may occur in both breasts or be dominant in one. The duct leading to the nipple may give out a greenish yellow discharge. The breast lumps may be quite tender, and they usually vary in size and tenderness in relation to the menstrual cycle. It is a completely innocent process.

Mastitis: Recognition and Treatment


This is also referred to as cystic disease, although in fact it is less a disease than a physiological dysfunction. If the diagnosis can be accurately made in advance, then there is no reason to do anything about it. The injection of hormones is of no help. Surgery is done often for this disease because it can be difficult to differentiate it from a tumor.

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