Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
Limit your intake of caffeine in coffee and soft drinks, theophyllines in
tea, and theobromine in chocolate. Although the role of these methylxanthines is
controversial, some women report improvement in pain when they limit these.
Daily vitamin E can reduce fibrocystic changes. Avoid doses higher than 600
mg per day.
Wear a well-fitted bra or sports bra for support, especially if you have
large breasts. You may want to wear a comfortable bra to bed.
Apply warm compresses to your breasts for pain relief.
Over-the-counter pain medication may help.
Make note, and avoid, any foods that may seem to cause the pain.
Keep a diary of pain, documenting frequency and severity for at least a
two month period. This may be enough to convince you and your doctor that the pain
is cyclic and not severe enough to warrant medications that may have bothersome
Injury: If you suffer an injury to your breast, apply an ice pack for 20
minutes just as you would for any other bruise. Do not let the ice touch your
skin directly. You can use a bag of frozen vegetables wrapped in a towel. You
may take a pain reliever such as ibuprofen (Advil, for example).
Mastitis: Breast infections require treatment by a
doctor. After you see a doctor, try pain medication, frequent feedings of your
infant and warm