Breast Itch or Rash
Breast itch/rash is most commonly due to skin irritation (eg eczema, or mild allergic reaction to clothing/ dye/ detergent). Even lotions, perfumes, or sweat may irritate the skin over the breast area.
- Use a mild body soap and cool-tepid water for showing; gently pat dry. Apply a thin layer of moisturiser
- Wash bras with a mild detergent, and rinse off thoroughly
- Consider placing cotton pads in the bra cups to keep the area dry, and minimise contact with potential allergens (perfume, scented creams, etc)
- If you have eczema, you may consult your usual dermatologist to get advice on how to manage this acute flare
- If the rash is bloody/”weeping” (having yellowish sticky discharge): please consult a doctor to check if a steroid ointment is suitable
- If there is pus/fever: please consult a doctor as soon as possible
- If the rash if persistent after 2 weeks, consider seeing a specialist (skin or breast) for further evaluation
As a breast specialist, Dr Tan Yia Swam will assess the pattern of the itch/rash, and do the necessary tests to confirm that it is not due to cancer. This may involve a scan, and biopsy for certain patients.
Nipple discharge may manifest in several ways: some ladies notice staining on the bra or pyjamas, some others notice it as part of their regular breast self-exam.
There are many causes for nipple discharge: most commonly due to previous breastfeeding. Other causes include: benign duct changes/growth, thyroid problem, a hormone producing-type of brain tumour, or some forms of breast cancer.
If you detect nipple discharge, it is good to consult a doctor for a full evaluation: these are some of the things to take note of and report to the doctor:
- Did the discharge come out by itself, or only when you press?
- Is it on one side, or both side?
- Is it always from the same spot, or from several areas on the nipple?
- What is the color? Transparent, yellow, green, brownish, red, milky?
- Do you notice any breast lumps?
- When was your most recent mammogram (if above 40 years old)?
- Have you ever had a breast ultrasound? if so- bring along the report to the doctor’s
Dr Tan Yia Swam will need to know the pattern of the discharge, and arrange for the relevant scans, and additional specialised tests such as sending the fluid for lab test (cytology). Sometimes, patients may need surgery to find out the cause (microdochectomy, or total duct excision).