Posted on: Feb 15, 2018 07:51PM - edited Feb 15, 2018 07:55PM by FarmStrong
I am BRCA1 and BRCA2 negative; however, have an extensive family history of breast cancer, my mother being the closest to me (diagnosed in her early 40's). I am 27 and have been breastfeeding my first baby for just over a year now. I have had your common breastfeeding bumps in the road including: blisters from a poor latch, biting injuries, thrush, milk blisters, clogged ducts, and two rounds of mastitis. All of these problems, with the exception of latch and biting issues have involved my left breast only.
In October of 2017 I developed a pinpoint painful blister on my left nipple accompanied by shooting pain from the lesion down the center of my breast. I assumed it was ductal thrush or a milk blister and saw my GP, he didn't think that was the case and gave me antibiotics. It didn't get better so I reached out to my OBGYN in November who prescribed me a multipurpose nipple ointment that included a steroid, anti-fungal, and antibiotic. The ointment provided a small amount of relief but did not make the lesion go away. When the lesion appeared, milk production in that breast also dropped in half, while the right breast has remained constant.
The "blister" eventually turned into a small crater-like lesion with a painful ring of thickened skin around it. It heals slightly, scabs, and then flakes, and repeat. It never looks awful and is small (nothing like the blisters I had when my son was a newborn) but it has remained very painful with a occasional dull itch. Some days having my bra on is too much so you can imagine what breastfeeding feels like. The shooting pain down into my breast went away after 3 months but the lesion remained(s), milk production never went back up.
In December I saw my OBGYN in person and she thought the tissue didn't look alarming but didn't like how it hadn't responded to anything and she referred me to a breast surgeon. The surgeon said it was nursing trauma before looking at it (sad face) and sent me with medical grade honey to put on it for 3 weeks. It didn't get better. At my recheck he did a very quick ultrasound of the tissue just under my nipple after my husband prompted him to; nothing alarming. He said it must be eczema and that my age plus currently breastfeeding made him unconcerned. He said to come back once I stopped breastfeeding if it was still there.
The pain and small lesion persists and it is now February 2018. On Monday I went to a dermatologist for a second opinion and he injected a steroid for eczema directly below the lesion in hopes that the topical ointment just wasn't cutting it because I am nursing. He said if it doesn't resolve it needs to be biopsied. I scheduled a recheck in 3 weeks.
It's only been four days but the steroid injection has provided no relief despite my hopes. The small area of thickened skin is painful, even when not nursing. With the unsettling feeling growing as the timeline continues, I am not sure I should wait another three weeks for the biopsy as I could have results by then. Sometimes, especially after my experience with the breast surgeon, I feel like I am making a mountain out of a molehill but I can't shake concern. March will be month 6 without able healing progress, but it hasn't really spread either. I am not willing to wean my son unless I have to. We are also trying to conceive and I have reservations about doing so with this looming over my head.
Any personal experience or constructive thoughts are welcome. I have read a few cases that fit my demographic but there are very few accounts of personal experience.Log in to post a reply
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