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Lactation Mastitis

Lactation Mastitis Causes

Mastitis occurs when bacteria enter the breast through a break or crack in the skin of the nipple or through the opening to the milk ducts in your nipple. Bacteria from the skin's surface and baby's mouth enter the milk duct and can multiply leading to pain, redness and swelling of the breast as infection progresses.

Lactation Mastitis Definition

Mastitis is an infection of the breast tissue that leads to pain, swelling and redness of the breast. Mastitis most frequently affects women who are breast-feeding, although in rare circumstances this condition can occur outside of lactation

Lactation Mastitis Diagnosis

The doctor diagnoses mastitis based on a physical examination, taking into account signs and symptoms of fever, chills and a painful area in the breast. Another obvious sign is a wedge-shaped area on the breast that points toward the nipple and is tender to the touch.

Lactation Mastitis Symptoms and Signs

With mastitis, signs and symptoms can appear suddenly and may include: breast tenderness or warmth to the touch; general malaise or feeling ill; swelling of the breast; pain or a burning sensation continuously or while breast-feeding; skin redness, often in a wedge-shaped pattern; and ever of 101 F (38.3 C) or greater.

Lactation Mastitis Treatment

Mastitis treatment usually involves antibiotics, wherein treating mastitis generally requires a 10- to 14-day course of antibiotics. The patient may feel well again 24 to 48 hours after starting antibiotics, but it's important to take the entire course of medication to minimize her chance of recurrence.

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