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Let Down Feeling...Not pregnant! HELP!

BDW Member Posts: 4
edited March 2020 in Not Diagnosed But Worried

Hi. I'm 37 and have been having pain in my left breast as well as a very disturbing "let down feeling" in both breasts. I have nursed three children so I'm very familiar with the feeling. My youngest is 7. I had 2 fairly large cysts drained from my left breast in Oct 2016, and a fibroadenoma removed from the right in Nov 2016. The let down feeling has only been going on for a couple of weeks but when you GOOGLE it, aside from being pregnant (which I'm not), Cancer pops up and I'm totally freaking out. Anxiety on 10. I have an appt in 2 weeks but I believe I will be crazy by then from worrying. HELP. Has anyone had this feeling and it not be anything? I have really dense breasts and my last mammogram was in Oct 2016 and then the right breast in Feb 2017 to make sure the fibroadenoma was removed completely.


  • melissadallas
    melissadallas Member Posts: 929

    You know, people frequently report that feeling on the "not diagnosed" threads, but very rarely, if ever,do I remember any of them being diagnosed cancer. I would think it very unlikely you have anything significant and new in four months since your last imaging, but it is good you are getting checked out if you are anxious about it.

  • SarahStarStuff
    SarahStarStuff Member Posts: 1

    Wow- this sounds nearly identical to my own experience and I just joined this board and started asking yesterday! I'm freaked out about the let down sensation too but am hoping it's hormonal? I'm also reading about it being a symptom of breast cancer but also a possible symptom of pre-menopause. I'm 38 and know that's a tad early but I hope that's both of our case.

  • BDW
    BDW Member Posts: 4

    Thank you for your responses. I will update as I find out more. I hope it is just hormonal SarahStarStuff!

  • Michelle_in_cornland
    Michelle_in_cornland Member Posts: 1,233

    I second the "hormonal" idea. I had that feeling for several years and my breasts were absolutely fine, at that time.

  • gb2115
    gb2115 Member Posts: 547

    Get it checked, but honestly, because it's on both sides it sounds like something hormonal... our bodies can be so weird!!

  • AmbMcC
    AmbMcC Member Posts: 2

    hi!! I joined just so I could comment on this post!!

    I am 26 with two children. I’ve been done breastfeeding for about 2 years.

    Over a few months I noticed I had a few lymph nodes swollen in my jaw. I was preoccupied with an endometriosis diagnosis and surgery so I put it off in the back of my mind.

    Well fast forward to this last week and now they are painful. I had an ultrasound and there are clusters of enlarged lymph nodes in my jaw. Also my blood cell count and monocytes were high so they said it was a virus. As days went on I never got sick in any way. Zero symptoms! Now it’s painful in my collar bone, left breast and I’m also getting the let down feeling!!! Of course google is NOT our friend.

    I’m just wondering if anyone ever got to the bottom of why they were feeling the let down??

    I’m freaking out about it seriously!!! I’m terrified. I’ve notified my doctor but she’s not in the office mondays

  • BDW
    BDW Member Posts: 4


    I ended up having a ultrasound and a mammogram. They found quite a few cysts but nothing they suspected as cancer. They said it was likely hormones. The let down feeling has since stopped thank goodness. I hope you get it all figured out.

  • all_done84
    all_done84 Member Posts: 1

    I too get this feeling. I also have many cysts and was diagnosed with fibrocystic breast condition. From what I've been told is it can be hormonal, depending on your cycle. It can also be dueto cysts pressing against milk ducts (or something along these lines, I can't remember exactly how my doctor explained it to me). This alone with a small amount of discharge can be normal for this issue, however i was told if the discharge is bloody then to go see doctor asa

  • AmbMcC
    AmbMcC Member Posts: 2

    I'm now having clear discharge :

  • _MandM_
    _MandM_ Member Posts: 3

    Hi, did you get your concerns addressed?

  • BDW
    BDW Member Posts: 4


    I ended up having a ultrasound and a mammogram. They found quite a few cysts but nothing they suspected as cancer. They said it was likely hormones. The let down feeling has since stopped thank goodness. I was told that I should begin yearly mammograms even though I'm under 40.

  • _MandM_
    _MandM_ Member Posts: 3

    I have been having let down feelings for years now. My youngest son is now 6. I thought it might be normal, so i never worried. Over the past few weeks I've been feeling a slight burning/tingling sensation in my right breast. I freaked out and started performing back to back exams and i'm sure that didn't help. I have since stopped, tried to get a grip, and scheduled my annual mammogram. Intake scheduled me for a diagnostic exam w 3D mammo and ultrasound because of my concerns. My breast are extremely dense, and i'm now more suspicious of the letdown feeling, so I googled it. I'm sad to hear the feeling can be linked to cancer. My exam is scheduled for next week, two weeks post hysterectomy (I still have one ovary, but have been perimenopausal for a year now). I hope the feeling is indeed hormonal, even the tingling I'm feeling.

    Question, are there any other tests I should look into other than the 3D mammo and ultrasound?

  • _MandM_
    _MandM_ Member Posts: 3

    That's good news, BDW!

  • NadiaM
    NadiaM Member Posts: 1

    I’ve been feeling A weird tingling for about a week. Just realized it’s the letdown sensation but no lumps or redness. Hoping to hear back from some of you that it was nothing to worry about while I try to get a mammogram done. Thanks

  • benni
    benni Member Posts: 1

    I've breastfed 3 children, and there are still times when I get that feeling. I never related it to my hormones, but a more of a body memory response. For instance, I could be watching something on television and hear an infant cry, and if I'm feeling especially nostalgic that my 3 are much older (the youngest will be 15 next month), I will suddenly experience that let down feeling. It's a strange experience to have when you haven't breastfed in 14 years, but it's something my body will never forget.

  • DKim
    DKim Member Posts: 1

    I signed up just to reply to this post since so many of you described similar experiences to what I am feeling now. Just over a month ago I started feeling a large solid lump in my right breast that was very tender. My breast became swollen and painful. At first I thought it might just be hormonal period stuff but then the area became discolored. I went to my doctor who gave me ibuprofen and antibiotics thinking it was mastitis. This diagnosis seemed weird to me since I am not pregnant and have not nursed in over 10 years.

    My doctor also sent me for a diagnostic mammogram and a sonogram and had me see a breast specialist because I had to take antibiotics for the issue. The mammogram an sonogram showed that I have very dense breast tissue and several cysts which they said was not a problem. The scans showed no sign of cancer or any tumors.

    The infection went away but since then I am having that let down type sensation in both breasts. More so in my right breast. And sometimes I have severe shooting pain. It also feels like part of the breast becomes hard or swollen at times. In addition, where my breast meets my under arm I feel an itching sensation. The let down feeling and the pain both emanate from under the arm toward the nipple.

    I went back to see my GYN and she is sending me back to the breast specialist. She said I will need to get a breast MRI next.

    One last comment, my GYN says it is not the cause but I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia about 6 months ago. Still getting my head around that diagnosis.

  • dreyes43
    dreyes43 Member Posts: 1

    I’m 43yo and my son is 5. I stopped breastfeeding when he was 19 months. Over the past year, I’ve been getting a “let down” sensation so bad that I’m afraid I might even leak milk although that hasn’t happened. I’m not pregnant and this usually happens when I’m around babies or even talking about nursing. Lately my breast have been so painful and tender, especially after taking off my bra. I have done a self exam and have not found any lumps. When I checked my nipples, I do get milk. Anyone else experiencing this

  • djmammo
    djmammo Member Posts: 1,003


    See your doctor, they may want to do some bloodwork. There is a benign tumor of the pituitary that can produce prolactin which tells the breast to make milk which can be detected on a simple blood test.

    If you have been having headaches or problems with your vision along with the milky discharge, call your doctor today.

    see this page for additional information:

  • Felmomof6
    Felmomof6 Member Posts: 1


    I know that this was posted 2 years ago, but I just started having the let down feeling last week. Today I noticed zit looking things on my areola near my nipple. I haven’t nursed in over a year. Called my gyn, left a message for the nurse. Waiting to hear back. But I’m wondering, if there were any updates. Someone had a reply on the original post about a benign tumor on the pituitary gland. I read about it, and it totally fits. I’m just trying to find out more information, while waiting. My mammogram isn’t until the end of January 2020.

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,274

    Dear Felmomof6,

    Welcome to the BCO community. We are sorry that these breast changes have brought you here but glad that you reached out. if you look at those who have posted here in the past it will show you when they were most recently active. For those who have had recent activity you can always send them a private message to follow up with specific questions about their posts. djmammo has also posted a link to more information out of the mayo clinic. You can check that out above. In the meantime we hope that you have heard back from your doctor today for your own peace of mind. Keep us posted on what you learn.

    The Mods

  • Jessann
    Jessann Member Posts: 1

    I signed up just now to respond to you as I am going through the same thing. I noticed the let down feeling a month or so ago. I didn’t think to much about it. But now I have had it for 2 weeks straight. Sometimes it’s more let down feeling. Sometimes it’s tingling. Sometimes it’s warmth radiating like crazy. I did notice the zit like things you were mentioning as well as ‘crustys’ I saw similar looking to dried milk after breastfeeding. I haven’t breastfed in 3 years. Tomorrow I have a breast exam. Hoping for some answers or referrals to a specialist. Hoping it’s an easy fix for both of us!

  • moderators
    moderators Posts: 7,274

    Jessann, welcome to and thank you for your post! Please let us know how it goes tomorrow. We're thinking of you!

    The Mods

  • clarebarez
    clarebarez Member Posts: 15


    I'm glad I found this thread. I have a heaviness felling in both my breast, with pain in my left. And I think it's non cyclical because it happens always right after my period and subsides few days before and during my period. I ended up with Ultrasound and found many cysts that are probably benign.

    I don't know if I am actually experiencing fibrocystic changes. I'll need to see a surgeon next week to know.

    Hoping all of you are okay.

  • JLP1979
    JLP1979 Member Posts: 1

    So glad I found this thread. I had a lumpectomy about three weeks ago and have had this letting down feeling (but pretty painful) since the surgery. So of course my first thought is something is wrong, have not had this since I stopped breast feeding 14 years ago! Was going to call my GP as my breast surgeon seems to be done with me since my lumpectomy came back all clear. Wonder if it had to do with the ALH?

  • Bagel
    Bagel Member Posts: 1

    I am 48 and having similar symptoms. I did find a lump last week and very tender breasts, mostly the left. The let down feeling started after I noticed the tenderness and full feeling. I have an ultrasound and mammogram scheduled for next week. Since I noticed the lump first I am freaked out that it is cancer but reading these posts makes me feel like it might be pre-menopause related hormones.