Nodular mastopathy

The mammary glands of women are important organs of the reproductive system. Due to a variety of reasons, they are exposed to various diseases, mastopathy occupies the leading place.

And if oncologists used to deal with this problem, now, in order to prevent the appearance of the disease and start timely treatment, gynecologists regularly examine the breast. It is early diagnosis that avoids serious consequences.

In the article we will talk about nodal breast mastopathy, what it is and what treatment options are.

Nodular breast mastopathy

What is nodular breast mastopathy? By nodular mastopathy include benign changes in the mammary glands, which are characterized by the formation of nodules and cysts in the tissues.

Nodular mastopathy is a type of disease that mammologists and oncologists consider as a pretumor stage, with subsequent development of cancer in case of late treatment.

Seals in the form of nodes can be single or multiple, formed in one chest or immediately in both.

Microcalcinates, thickening, breast swelling, painful sensations before the menstrual cycle, nipple discharge are typical for nodular mastopathy.


  1. Fibrous nodular. It is characterized by benign course. The connective tissue expands, forming dense nodules. The mammary glands become asymmetrical. Pain can be permanent or episodic.
  2. Diffuse-node. In the glands appear cysts filled with fluid. They may have different shapes and sizes with a limited contour. Most often, cysts have an oblong or rounded shape. For this type of disease is characterized by pain, which gives to the shoulder, arm or axillary region.
  3. Cystic nodular. The nodes in the mammary gland have clear boundaries and differ in various sizes. Seals gradually increase in size, capturing the adjacent adjacent tissue. They are especially noticeable before the menstrual cycle. Due to the formation and growth of cysts, the ducts of the mammary gland are squeezed, which leads to venous congestion and edema. There are painful sensations, the chest becomes sensitive.

The nodular form of mastopathy is divided into simple or proliferating according to the severity of the processes. The latter is considered as a precancerous condition.

Is it a precancerous condition?

This type of disease poses a threat to women's health. Therefore, when making a diagnosis, it is necessary to immediately proceed to the treatment of nodular breast mastopathy.

Even minor chest pains should be the first bells to visit a gynecologist or breast specialist.

Diagnostic modern equipment allows you to identify the disease at the earliest stages. This will prevent further complications since nodular mastopathy is characterized by a transition to the cancerous stage.

With timely and proper treatment, the prognosis can be favorable and there is a high probability that in the future there will be no recurrent disease or relapse.


The appearance of nodular breast mastopathy is characteristic of women aged 30-45 years. The reasons for the development of this pathology are such factors as:

  • Different type of gynecological diseases.
  • Genetic predisposition.
  • Nervous system disorders and stressful situations.
  • Breast injuries.
  • Frequent abortions.
  • Smoking and alcohol abuse.
  • Long breaks in the intimate sphere.
  • The presence of hepatitis, diabetes.
  • Any degree of obesity.
  • Regular use of hormonal drugs and contraceptives.
  • Failure after delivery from breastfeeding.

But above all, nodular mastopathy manifests itself with high prolactin and hormonal imbalance, when the amount of estrogen increases. Frequent delivery and breastfeeding increases the chances of protection from this disease.

Nodular breast mastopathy - photo:

Symptoms and manifestations

  • The most important symptom is the presence in the mammary gland seals round or oblong in shape with clear contours.
  • Palpation of these places appear painful sensations. Pain can be dull and aching. Especially often they appear during menstruation.
  • Due to the swelling of the connective tissue, breast enlargement occurs.
  • Pressing on the nipple of the diseased breast causes discharge, which may be transparent, white or yellowish.
  • When mastopathy nodules and seals can not be felt in the supine position.

Those who have nodular mastopathy experience all these symptoms during PMS. That is why they do not attach importance to them and often the treatment of the disease begins with a delay. Also, seals may decrease or disappear for a period of critical days.


If there are symptoms indicating mastopathy, the doctor prescribes diagnostic procedures for the woman to establish the diagnosis.

This is due to the fact that many types of the disease have similar symptoms and manifestations.

First of all, palpation is performed in order to establish the presence of knots, to determine which surface has seals: lobular, smooth or granular.

They also apply pressure on the nipples to reveal whether there is a discharge and what color they are.

If a nodal breast mastopathy is suspected, the doctor prescribes a comprehensive examination to the patient.

This includes:

  • Mammography. It allows you to see the shadows of cysts, uniform blackouts, fibrous strands and other pathological changes in the chest. The picture is made in 2 projections: straight and oblique. The method allows to detect the disease at very early stages and provide the doctor with complete information about the state of the mammary glands. Such a procedure women should be held every two years.
  • Puncture. If cysts were found, a puncture is performed followed by cytological examination of the material. It allows you to accurately establish benign or malignant tumors formed in the mammary gland.
  • Ductography. Conducted when suspected changes within the ducts. Using this method, you can determine whether they are deformed or expanded, whether there are cysts and salt deposits.
  • Ultrasound. The method allows you to see if there are cystic formations, their location, shape and size. You can also use ultrasound to determine their structure and assess the state of the surrounding tissues.
  • Pneumocystography. Helps to diagnose the presence of large cyst capsules.

If a woman has nodal mastopathy, it is necessary to pass such types of examinations as: testing for hormones, pelvic ultrasound, a visit to an oncologist and an endocrinologist.

Conservative method

It consists in the use of drugs that will help stabilize hormonal levels, promote the treatment of gynecological problems and the endocrine system.

In some cases, it is shown the use of sedatives on the proper functioning of the nervous system.

The doctor may prescribe a puncture, which will carry out the suction of the fluid and further sclerosis of the walls of the formations.

If this method does not help, enucleation is indicated to cure the cyst. This preserves the surrounding tissue.

If the case is running, surgery is indicated.


During surgery, a complete excision of the nodes, cysts or tumors is performed. Also, depending on the severity of the disease, a specific tissue sector can be removed to avoid further spreading or growth of the tumor. The operation is performed under local or general anesthesia for 40-50 minutes.

The operation of nodular breast mastopathy can be performed in one of the following ways:

  1. Enucleation methodwhen only tumors or cysts are removed.
  2. Sectoral Resultwhen not only a tumor is removed, but also nearby tissue.

In most cases, the patient is discharged the next day. The cut out node is sent to the laboratory for cytological examination. Further prescribed conservative treatment.

Methods of traditional medicine

Folk remedies can give a positive result if you start using recipes at the initial stage of the disease.

If the disease is started, there will be no effect from treatment with folk remedies of nodular mastopathy.

Here it is important not to engage in self-treatment, and it is mandatory to visit a gynecologist or a mammologist.

The most effective in the treatment of this disease are recipes using:

It is recommended to use traditional medicine in consultation with your doctor.

There are other ways to use folk remedies, more here.


A woman after 30 years should visit the gynecologist at least 2 times a year. From this age, it is also necessary to independently monitor the state of the breast, conducting its regular palpation to identify seals and other formations.

It is necessary to eliminate physical exertion, avoid stress and overwork, monitor your diet. Any injury to the chest can lead to negative consequences. Therefore, in this situation, a visit to the doctor is necessary.

It is desirable that the first birth was no later than 30 years of age. Minimize abortions, so they are the impetus for the development of mastopathy. Do not avoid breastfeeding. The duration of breastfeeding should be as long as possible.

If you find any changes in the chest should immediately consult a doctor.

If not treated?

Is cancer always nodular mastopathy? The disease in 10% of cases can degenerate into a cancer of the breast. Therefore, it is important not to miss the initial stage of the development of the disease and proceed to timely treatment under the supervision of a physician.

Now you know all about nodular mastopathy, what it is and how to treat it. The disease in its early stages has a positive prognosis for cure. The main thing in time to identify the pathology and in the appointment of proper treatment strictly adhere to all recommendations of the attending physician.

You can find additional information on this topic in the Species section.

Causes of nodular mastopathy

Among the causes of nodular mastopathy often distinguish the following:

  • reproductive system pathologies and imperfect sexual life,
  • stable psycho-emotional and stressful states,
  • hormonal disruptions in the body,
  • metabolic disorders
  • pathology of the genital and endocrine system,
  • congenital and hereditary predisposition
  • environmental problems,
  • uncontrolled hormones and contraceptive drugs,
  • negative habits, improper eating behavior and lifestyle.

Any of the above reasons directly or indirectly affect the normal hormonal balance of a woman. Nodular mastopathy is a disease triggered by an increased amount of estrogen, enhanced prolactin synthesis, and lack of thyroid hormones.

Artificial termination of pregnancy plays a major role in the development of mastopathy: in such a state there is a sharp surge and the same sudden decline in hormonal activity, which cannot but affect the state of the female body.

The disease is typical mainly for women 30-50 years, due to the peculiarities of the female body during this period.

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Symptoms of nodular mastopathy

Breast diseases are very common in women. This is a group of pathological conditions that develop regardless of pregnancy, accompanied by impaired structural histology of the mammary glands.

Nodular mastopathy is characterized by a disorder of the normal balance of epithelial and connective tissue, as well as diverse changes in the glandular tissues. The disease is formed due to an increased amount of estrogen hormones in the body. By the way, women who have many children often give birth and breastfeed, much less often suffer from a nodular form of mastopathy.

Nodular mastopathy is most often manifested by the formation of nodular and cystic formations in the mammary gland, accompanied by an overgrowth of connective tissue. This form of the disease occurs, as a rule, along with the existing fibrous mastopathy. Seals can be observed from one or both sides of the mammary glands: they have a clear localization, they are easy to grab with your fingers. In the premenstrual period, transient augmentation and swelling of the nodules may be present, decreasing or disappearing with the arrival of critical days.

In case of nodal mastopathy, women notice pain in the mammary glands, their swelling before menstruation, the appearance of discharge from the milky ducts, deterioration during menstruation. The pain and discomfort in the glands can be different: from minor to intense, they intensify before critical days, and after a few days they subside. The pain may radiate to the shoulder joints, shoulder blades.

When PMS in the mammary glands, a feeling of heaviness, discomfort, internal pressure appears, the breast significantly increases in volume. The discharge from the dairy canals may differ in a yellowish or greenish tint.

Disorders of the menstrual cycle with mastopathy is usually not observed, although in some cases it is possible the development of polymenorrhea, the absence of ovulation, the lengthening of the cycle due to the luteal phase.

Also, patients complain about the presence in the mammary gland of a dense formation with diffuse or focal localization. Along with compaction, the nearby lymph nodes may increase - subclavian and axillary.

Simultaneously with diffuse changes, single or multiple nodular foci, having irregular shape and clear boundaries, tightly elastic when palpating can be palpated. In the prone position, the nodules can hide, in an upright position, they return to their original place.


Fibrous mastopathy

In case of fibrous nodular mastopathy, benign fibrous proliferation of the tissues of the mammary gland occurs, accompanied by the growth of dense nodules. Hormone-dependent disease - is associated with a hormonal disorder in the female body.

The disease occurs with a change in the histological structure of the mammary glands and the simultaneous pain syndrome. Glands at the same time do not lose their symmetry, and aching pain is both constant and episodic (more often before the onset of menstruation).

The discharge from the milk ducts can vary in intensity and color — from transparent to yellowish green. The process can affect one or both mammary glands at the same time.

This disease should be carefully diagnosed, since the symptoms of fibrous nodular mastopathy are in many ways similar to the clinical picture of the malignant process in the mammary glands. Examinations are carried out no earlier than 7 days from the onset of menstruation, when the cyclical enlargement of the mammary glands decreases.

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Diffuse nodular mastopathy

With the development of diffuse nodular mastopathy in the mammary glands cystic formations with liquid contents are formed.Cystic capsules can be of various sizes and shapes, from a few millimeters to ten centimeters in diameter. Cysts have limited contours, often rounded or oblong. The pain in the area of ​​the nodules may extend to the arm, shoulder joint, axillary region or scapula.

At the onset of the disease, mastopathy may manifest itself weakly, and only an independent examination of the mammary glands, intentional or accidental, can determine the presence of a suspicious pathology. In a healthy state, the mammary glands should not deliver painful sensations and increase dramatically in size, especially on one side and asymmetrically. Swelling of the breast, changes in the skin, a feeling of discomfort, tingling, twitching in the glands, the appearance of fluid from the nipples - any of these symptoms should alert the woman and convince her to visit a mammologist or gynecologist.

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Cystic nodular mastopathy

The main manifestations of cystic nodular mastopathy are nodular formations with clear boundaries, having different sizes. Sometimes, to differentiate this kind of mastopathy and cancer, a number of additional studies are carried out, up to and including the diagnostic operation.

Consolidation of the mammary gland or its individual region may gradually increase, capturing the adjacent tissues: such symptoms are especially noticeable on the background of the onset of menstruation.

Cystic nodular mastopathy is often found at a young age at the final stage of puberty, as well as in pregnant women in the first trimester.

Enlargement of the mammary glands may occur due to the formation of cystic formations, supplemented by congestion of venous blood and edema of connective tissues. The condition is accompanied by increased breast sensitivity and tenderness, as well as psychological discomfort - excessive irritability, nervous breakdowns, insomnia.

Discharges from the lactic channel resemble colostrum. The appearance of brownish and bloody discharge causes an immediate visit to the doctor.

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Treatment of nodular mastopathy

Treatment is usually determined individually for each case, taking into account the form, neglect of the process, the presence of additional pathological factors affecting the hormonal picture and the functionality of the reproductive system.

Conservative therapy of the nodular form of mastopathy is aimed at stabilizing the disturbed hormonal background, as well as concomitant urinary and metabolic pathologies. The main treatment is usually aimed at removing the cystic nodes and formations surgically.

Puncture of the cystic capsule may be performed, with suction of the internal fluid and subsequent hardening of the walls of the formation. When nodular mastopathy recurs, sometimes I use the enucleation method - exfoliation of the cyst with preservation of the surrounding tissues.

In severe cases, an operative sectoral resection method is used, which is the removal of a nodular formation simultaneously with part of the breast tissue. In particular, multiple cysts and nodes that are not susceptible to qualitative husking can be removed with the help of sectoral, radical resection, as well as the use of partial or complete mastectomy.

Surgery for nodular mastopathy

Operational therapeutic solutions for nodular mastopathy include excision or exfoliation of nodular formations in the case when there is no positive dynamics in the process of conservative treatment. Surgical interventions are used only with sufficient indications for surgery: for example, when there is a suspicion of malignancy of the process, a sharp increase in the tumor, the rapid emergence of diffuse forms of nodes and cystic formations. Increasing the size of the nodes more than twice over three months are a sufficient indication for surgery.

Surgical therapeutic methods for nodular mastopathy are carried out with the help of local or general anesthesia and last 40-50 minutes depending on the complexity of the operation.

Unfortunately, about 10% of diagnosed forms of nodular mastopathy can degenerate into a malignant variant of the course of the disease. Therefore, sometimes, at the slightest suspicion of rebirth, doctors may insist on surgery in order not to miss the opportunity to save the breast by removing the pathological nodes directly.

In order to avoid serious complications, women suffering from nodular mastopathy are recommended to undergo an examination with a breast specialist once or twice a year.

Removal of nodular mastopathy

Focal removal of nodular mastopathy is called sectoral resection - this is an operation on the breast, during which some of its sector is removed along with the tumor.

The sectoral resection method usually involves the removal of a specific tissue zone, which may result from hyperplasia or malignancy of tumor cells.

The type of anesthesia used may depend on the form and severity of the pathological process. Local anesthesia is mandatory, using novocaine or lidocaine. General anesthesia is used in the case when the cystic node does not give in to palpation, or resection of the nodes is of a larger scale.

After the operational procedures, the need to stay in the hospital is determined by the doctor on the basis of the patient's well-being: usually one day is enough, followed by an extract. After surgery, analgesic, antibacterial drugs can be prescribed, after a week, during the normal healing process, postoperative sutures can be removed.

General information

Nodular mastopathy (localized adenomatosis) is a focal form of fibrocystic disease of the mammary glands. Oncology and mammology consider this type of mastopathy as a pretumor process, against the background of which the risk of developing breast cancer increases. Nodal seals can be single or multiple, detected in one or both mammary glands. Nodular formations are determined, as a rule, against the background of signs of diffuse mastopathy - coarse lobulation, hardness, grit, soreness outside the nodes and discharge from the nipples.

Causes of nodular mastopathy

The peak incidence of nodular mastopathy accounts for 35-45 years, which is explainable from the point of view of the features of female physiology. Monthly cyclical changes in the woman's body during the reproductive period occur under the influence of two main hormones, progesterone and estrogen, which provide a two-phase character of the menstrual cycle and cause certain processes in the tissues of the mammary glands.

Normally, in the first phase of the menstrual cycle, estrogens stimulate proliferative changes in the glands, and in the second phase, under the influence of the hormone antagonist progesterone, proliferation processes are inhibited. Against the background of the imbalance of these hormones (excess estrogen and progesterone deficiency), excessive uncontrolled proliferation of breast tissue occurs, which leads to the development of diffuse and then nodular mastopathy.

Sometimes, the development of nodular mastopathy may be based on excessive production of the pituitary hormone - prolactin. Usually, an increase in prolactin secretion occurs during pregnancy and lactation, contributing to the formation of milk. However, with excessive secretion of prolactin outside of pregnancy, nodular mastopathy may also develop.

Hormonal imbalance, leading to the development of nodular mastopathy, can be provoked by frequent artificial abortions, prolonged stress, neurosis, metabolic disorders (diabetes, hypothyroidism, obesity, chronic hepatitis), gynecological diseases (adnexitis, endometritis), and other causes.

Heredity, early onset of menstruation or late onset of menopause, absence of pregnancy and childbirth by the age of 30, short or long lactation period, chest trauma (for example, breast contusion), bad habits, uncontrolled hormonal contraception, intestinal dysbiosis, predispose to nodular mastopathy.

Forms of the disease

In fact, the expressed nodes are the final stage of the development of fibrocystic mastopathy. Histological changes in the breast usually begin with the formation of small cysts filled with fluid. There may be a lot of such formations, but they don’t worry much about women.

If the level of hormones does not return to normal, then the cysts gradually thicken and the stage of diffuse nodular mastopathy begins. This form of the disease is characterized by fine-grained nodules scattered throughout the breast, which have blurred boundaries. Often a woman complains of pain during menstruation.

The next stage of the disease is the growth and compaction of the connective tissue, the formation of solid nodes with distinct boundaries. This form is characterized by discharge from the nipples and pain.

Why does nodular mastopathy occur?

The causes of mastopathy are still not fully understood. Scientists believe that hormonal changes in a woman's body play a leading role. Nodes in the mammary gland appear with increased activity of estrogen hormones. This explains why this condition is more common in women of childbearing age (30–45 years).

There are many different risk factors. This gynecological diseases, and late pregnancy, and postponed abortions, and early interrupted breastfeeding. Chronic stresses, diseases of various organs, metabolic and endocrine disorders (obesity, diabetes mellitus) affect the state of the mammary glands. Some role belongs to the genetic factor (heredity): nodular mastopathy often affects women who have sick close relatives.

Consolidation in the mammary glands can have a different origin. Most often they are benign in nature and do not even always need treatment, but sometimes there are also cancers. One of the most common causes is mastopathy, a condition in which cysts and dense nodes are formed in the chest. Unlike malignant tumors, they do not grow into adjacent tissues, do not metastasize.

Many doctors do not even consider mastopathy as a “real” disease. And yet she needs, at a minimum, constant monitoring. And if chest seals are found for the first time, a visit to the doctor and an examination are required.

There are different classifications of mastopathy. Most often it is divided into diffuse and nodal. When nodular form in the chest seals appear in a limited area. They usually occur in both mammary glands, but can be expressed more strongly on the one hand.

How does nodular mastopathy manifest?

In the mammary gland appear nodes with a clear smooth edges, they are easily displaced under the skin. Before the next monthly they increase, they become painful. After menstruation, symptoms often disappear completely.
Sometimes with pressure on the nipples of them appear discharge, transparent or colored, but they never have impurities of blood.

Sometimes mastopathy does not manifest itself at all. The woman has no complaints, and the nodes are detected by chance during a routine examination by a mammologist, an ultrasound scan or mammography.

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