Author Topic: Breast pain - perimenopause?  (Read 5637 times)

Offline notmyrealname

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Breast pain - perimenopause?
« on: December 28, 2016, 06:32:51 AM »
Just posting here until I can call the doctor's office.   I'm having a lot of soreness in my left breast.  I'm 46 years old and just had a period.   The pain feels like mastitis but no redness, just swollen and sore/tender.  It hurts, did not sleep well.

I know nothing about menopause except hot flashes, etc.

I generally think that hormone replacement is an invention of the pharma people and that I should pursue a natural menopause, but, hormones?

Any sharing of experience would be so appreciated, thanks.  I have a few older friends but have not had a lot of menopause discussions with anyone.  A friend who is 50 has not had it yet.

Offline CharlesH

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2016, 04:35:38 PM »
I'm replying as a husband of a 50-something year old woman, not a woman myself, so take this with a lot of salt...  symptoms you described were not something my wife experienced, either at your current age or when she started menopause several years later.  I think you are making a wise decision to check in with the doc.

Offline Greyghost

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2016, 08:23:43 PM »
Speaking as a younger lady of 30. I had quite a bit of pain right after I had my daughter, and I notice pain occasionally with the onset of my cycle. To me, it always seemed hormonal. I'm not thrilled at the prospect of synthetic hormones either, but I'm not sure of any alternatives. I'll have to ask my mother in law who is an NP, but really into holistic alternatives. When you do go to the doc, don't let them push you into treatments or medications, its gotta pass your BS test. Its been my experience that most of these guys are on auto pilot, treating symptoms only, and are getting incentives from pharmaceutical reps, instead of treating you as a whole person. I hope you have a good doc you can trust.

Offline Mr. Bill

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2016, 09:16:31 PM »
I asked my wife (60), and she doesn't remember having this specific problem.  But she did say that her mom had fluid-filled cysts that needed to be drained regularly.

Offline FrugalFannie

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2016, 09:51:21 PM »
I get cysts and they can get very sore. They tend to start just before my period and get really bad during it. They subside a couple days later. When it first started happening I rushed to get a mammogram. No issues. Just cysts. I've also been told by my docs that I have very fibrous breasts. Sounds so appealing doesn't it? Don't freak out but get it checked. It's likely nothing.

Offline CPT Morgan

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2016, 11:14:27 PM »
I too am not a woman but have a wife going through menopause and she has never experienced breast pain.  Since you asked though, she too did/does not want to take synthetic hormones and has had good success with black cohosh when she couldn't stand to bear the whole process (hot flashes) without anything at all.  There may have been other things in the supplement she uses, but I believe that the black cohosh is the main ingredient, if not the only ingredient.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2016, 01:07:52 AM »
Get checked to make sure it's not inflammatory breast cancer before assuming it's one of the more benign conditions with similar symptoms. It probably isn't cancer, but IBC is a very aggressive disease that pops up literally over night and time is of the essence.  Fiddle around with HRT vs herbals vs whatever after ruling out the super lethal stuff.

Offline RitaRose1945

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2016, 11:02:29 AM »
Freelancer is right.  It absolutely needs to be checked out as soon as possible.


I know it's a pain in the butt - trust me, my body loves to make benign lumps, so I've had more mammograms and biopsy (needle and extraction) than I can count.  But it needs to be done.  It's probably nothing, but you want to know that for sure, so if it gets worse or you see any other symptoms like a rash, just go to the doctor and screw waiting for an appointment.


The only time I have had pain like that was during some pretty serious hormone fluctuations.  Ducts swell, things get tight - it's sore.  But I don't remember having them around menopause.  I'm fully into menopause now, and I had to take progesterone to make getting there livable (horror story) so my version of perimenopause may not be the norm.


Offline notmyrealname

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2016, 12:23:36 AM »
Thanks everyone for the replies,  after my breast swelling up on Tues. night and calling the doc Wednesday morning, I was able to get seen at my ob/gyn on Thursday.   They suspected mastitis with an abcess, gave antibiotic and wanted me to urgently get a mammogram/ultrasound, which I had Friday. 

Ultrasound showed very enlarged ducts with pus and debris, appointment on Monday for follow-up and possible needle aspiration.  Mammogram painful and gross with small amount of brown discharge.

It was challenging to get appointments with the end of the year holiday and appointments being booked up for insurance deadlines, but I am thankful to the scheduler who worked to get me in for the mammogram and ultrasound, she was contacting many locations to get me in and  checked.

I was worried about and reading about inflammatory breast cancer, the worst possible situation.  Thankfully the antibiotics are gradually reducing the swelling.  The radiologist said that IBC is rare and he was 98% certain that's not what's going on but the doctors wouldn't know 100% until the swelling is resolved. 

Resting over the weekend and fingers crossed for that last 2% of certainty.   Thanks again for talking to me about it.  I appreciate it.

Offline FreeLancer

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #9 on: December 31, 2016, 01:03:49 AM »
Thank god. So glad you're getting a proper work up.

Offline CharlesH

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #10 on: December 31, 2016, 06:06:26 AM »
Great news!  I've dealt with mastitis in dairy cows.  Not fun I'm sure,  but not cancer!

Offline RitaRose1945

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #11 on: December 31, 2016, 07:12:14 AM »
Gotta love the health care staff that really work to fit you in when it's something painful and/or worrisome.


Yes, that kind of cancer is rare, and I'm very glad they think it's not that, but it's worth making sure it's not.


Ugh, I remember finding my first lump at a point when I didn't have insurance.  That was scary.  Do I wait until my insurance kicks in and let it spread?  Do I go to the doctor now and then it's a pre-existing condition?  That was before I knew that I just make benign lumps.  It's what I do.


Glad you're getting taken care of.

Offline Morning Sunshine

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #12 on: December 31, 2016, 08:32:48 AM »
mastitis?  are you breastfeeding?  can you get mastitis when not nursing?  :o  I get it regularly (that is, once or twice a child) when I have babies.  ugh.  I hate it!

Offline notmyrealname

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Re: Breast pain - perimenopause?
« Reply #13 on: December 31, 2016, 04:19:04 PM »
Not breastfeeding, my youngest is 8 years old.  That's why it's so weird.  But yes you can get mastitis not breastfeeding.  May have come from a cut or scratch.