About menopausal breast pain

Updated November 21, 2016

If you are fully menopausal, which means you have gone a full year since your last menstrual period, and are still experiencing breast pain you may have a breast infection called periductal mastitis.

Periductal Mastitis

Some menopausal women experience periductal mastitis because their milk ducts have become inflamed. Symptoms of this condition include nipple discharge; nipple retraction; breast pain; a lump in the breasts and inflammation of the ducts that surround the areola, according to


You may also have fibrocystic breasts. This is a benign condition. If your menses have completely ceased you are not as like to have this condition as you might be if you are still peri-menopausal and still regularly or irregularly menstruating. explains that this condition is caused by hormones. The hormones that are responsible for our reproductive abilities also cause glandular tissue to swell, which can make your breasts hurt.

Blocked Ducts

Fibrosis occurs when there is an overgrowth of fibrous tissue, which can be caused by oestrogen dominance or overload, according to The cells in the breasts' supporting tissue increase and this causes fibrocystic breasts. The ducts in your breasts generally drain secretions but these ducts can become blocked, and when this happens cysts can form. This generally occurs before the onset of complete menopause.


When breast tissue swells, it can cause tenderness and soreness because the fibrous tissues in the breasts are being stretched. Cysts develop when fluid fills the lumps in a woman's breasts.

Fluid Retention

Perimenopausal and menopausal women tend to retain water. A deficiency in progesterone results in water retention. Progesterone is another female hormone and it occurs when a woman ovulates. If she no longer ovulates, or is only ovulating sporadically during perimenopause, fluid is retained. This can make your breasts tender and painful. Dr. John Lee contends that fibrocystic breasts occur because there is too much oestrogen in a woman's body and not enough progesterone. He suggests that menopausal women use natural progesterone cream to remedy this, as well as taking vitamin E and Vitamin B6, which he says will prevent breast tenderness.


If you are experiencing breast pain, consider cutting back on your caffeine consumption, according to Women who participated in a study conducted at Duke University Medical Center reported a decline in sore breasts when they cut their caffeine consumption. Wear a bra 24/7 that is comfortable for you. It can provide you with support, even when you are sleeping. However, an ill-fitting bra can contribute to breast pain.

Other Causes

If you are taking hormone therapy, this can cause your breasts to be sore. If you are taking medications such as Zoloft and Prozac this, too, can contribute to breast pain.

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About the Author

Cindi Pearce is a graduate of Ohio University, where she received her bachelor’s degree in journalism. She completed both the undergraduate and graduate courses offered by the Institute of Children’s Literature. Pearce has been writing professionally for over 30 years.