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Fibrocystic Breasts, Causes, symptoms, Complications, Tests, Drugs and Treatment

Fibrocystic Breasts

Fibrocystic breast are mostly commonly composed of tissues which are lumpy or having rope like texture. The medical term used to describe this condition is called glandular or nodular breast tissue.

According to one estimate more than half of the women have experienced fibrocystic breast at different stages during their life. The medical doctors use the term fibrocystic breasts instead of fibrocystic breast disease because they consider that it is not a disease.


The breast changes can be categorized but fibrocystic breasts are just like normal breasts but the can cause tenderness, breast pain and lumpiness. These facts can be easily felt on the outer and upper areas of breast. Symptoms may appear just before the menstruation. The discomfort associated with fibrocystic breasts can be easily minimized with simple self-care measures.

The breasts should be evaluated if you are feeling pain in specific area and if continue to worsen, additionally this can be done if the lumps or thickening persist after having period.


The possible symptoms and signs of fibrocystic breast include:

  • The thickness of breasts or lump formation which may be blend in to the surrounding tissues
  • Tenderness or generalized breast pain
  • Fluctuations in the size of breast lumps
  • Non-bloody dark brown or green discharge leaking out of the breasts
  • Changes associated with both breasts
  • The increase in the lumpiness or breast pain from midcycle to period. The changes associated with fibrocystic breasts usually can be seen in women at their 20s to late 50s. In some rare case the women after having a menopause may experience the fibrocystic breast changes.



The actual cause of fibrocystic beast changes is still a mystery, but it is suggested that the reproductive hormones estrogen may play a crucial role in developing fibrocystic breast changes. If you don’t experience a menopause yet then the changes and pain you are feeling is dependent on the fluctuations of hormone during menstrual cycle. These fluctuations cause the lumpiness of your breasts and feeling of sore, tender and swollen may arise. These changes become worsen before menstrual period activates.


When viewed under the microscope the fibrocystic breast tissues can be easily distinguished in to different components.

  • Oval sacs or fluid filled round sacs called cysts
  • Fibrosis characterized by the prominent scar like fibrous tissues
  • Hyperplasia characterized by the overgrowth of cells which line the milk duct or the milk producing tissues of your breasts
  • Adenosis characterized by the enlargement of lobules


It is normally not associated with breast cancer until and unless the changes in your breasts are linked with atypical hyperplasia which is itself characterized by the abnormal growth of cells lining the ducts and breast lobules.

Tests and diagnosis

The possible tests which will help to diagnose he condition include:

  • Clinical breast exam: the doctor normally check for all the unusual areas by manually and visually examining your breasts and associated lymph nodes which may be located under your arms and neck.If everything seems to be OK after this initial exam then no need to perform additional test. If doctor found any change related to fibrocystic breasts then he may advice you to visit after few days as your menstrual period begins. After this you will be advised for further examination to check whether these problems are just associated with menstrual cycle or these may be due to some other factors. If the changes are reported due to menstruation then you will need an ultrasound or mammogram.
  • Mammogram: if anything wrong related to unusual thickness of breasts or lump is noted then you need a mammogram analysis. The mammogram is an X-ray which will help to evaluate specific area which will be under consideration. If you are above 30 and your breast exam seems to be normal doctor will surely advice you to take a mammogram.clin fib
  • Ultrasound: it is often employed with mammogram and use sound waves to capture the insight of your breasts. If your age is above 30 then ultrasound will be advisable this is just because it has better penetrating properties and better evaluate the lining of dense tissues. e tissues tightly packed with ducts, lobules, and stroma the connective tissues have less fats than older women should contain. Additionally ultrasound will help to evaluate between the cyst fluid filled and sold masses.
  • Fine-needle aspiration: if the doctor think that lump detected initially shows consistency of a cyst then he may advice you an ultrasound or may use a needle to check out whether the fluid can be withdrawn or not. This simple procedure can be done easily inside doctor’s office.
  • Breast biopsy: it is a method in which a small sample of your breast tissue is removed to view under a microscope. If your doctor found anything wrong during the examination inside a lump then additional test relating imaging tests like ultrasound and mammogram may be advisable. For more assistance you need to consult with a breast surgeon to get breast biopsy. If it seems anything wrong then radiology will be recommended for a breast biopsy.

Treatments and drugs

If the symptoms are mild or have no physical appearance of symptoms then no need of any treatment for fibrocystic breasts. Pain in the breasts or painful cysts which are associated with fibrocystic breasts may need medical attention.

The treatment may include:

  • Fine-needle aspiration: the doctor uses a hair tin needle to drain out the fluid from your cyst. Removing fluid from your cyst confirms your lump is associated with breast cyst and it imparts discomfort.
  • Surgical excision: in rare cases surgery may be advisable to remove cyst like lump and it is often advisable when discomfort is not resolved after careful monitoring and aspiration.

This is all about fibrocystic breasts and if you need to recover it then treatment is the only is not dependent on any kind of diet it only depends on the hormonal issues arises due to hormonal imbalance. This is not a life threatening disease and you can survive after having a fibrocystic breast changes.


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