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Mastalgia Versus Malignant Cyst

The breast has common problems ranging from a palpable mass, nipple discharge to breast pain. Elimination of terminal duct is evident through a pathologic discharge (Morrow, 2000). These breast problems entail a spectrum of malignant and benign disorders. Breast pain is a prevalent condition that affects females, with most of them complaining of tautness, severe fervent pain, or soreness in their breasts. Breast pain, also known as mastalgia, may be occasional or continuous in women. The occurrence of cyclical mastalgia is common some days before or after the mensuration period, and is more prevalent in perimenopausal and premenopausal females than in postmenopausal females. Notably, the pain eases with the end of the periods. This type of breast pain is known as cyclical breast pain. There is also the non-cyclical breast pain; it occurs on one breast, and is more prevalent in females of between 30 and 50 years. On the other hand, malignant cysts, which are sacs that are filled with fluids in the breast muscles, are common in women of between 35 and 50 years. According to Mayo Clinic: Breast Pain (2013), people should know that mastalgia is hardly an indication of breast cancer; it indicates benign – a noncancerous breast complaint. The Breast Clinic: Benign Breast Disease (n.d.) recommends that women who experience persistent pain should go for check-ups. However, one should not mistake muscles pain for breast pain. The former occurs on the tissues on the chest wall. Malignant cysts, on the other hand, are cancerous tumors that can easily spread to different body parts; they are not benign. Markedly, alterations in hormones that regulate the mensuration cycle of a woman are thought to be the cause of this breast condition. Moreover, females who take hormone replacement therapy (HRT) after menopause have high possibilities of developing breast cysts. Uncharacteristic mass of tissues – tumor – can be cancerous (malignant) or benign. Determining whether a tumor of cyst is malignant or benign is possible through biopsy – a process where the abnormal growth is detached and analyzed under a microscope (The Breast Clinic: Benign Breast Disease, n.d.). Adenocarcinoma is the main type of malignant cysts and close to all breast cancers begins in the breast’s glandular tissue – in the milk glands or the milk ducts.

A person with breast pain (mastalgia) may feel the pain in one or both breasts, or in a specific part of the breast. Besides, the person may feel the pain in the upper arm or armpit. It is a sharp, shooting, pinching, and burning pain. Women with breast pain feel some fullness or heaviness in the breast (Mokbel, 2012). Breast tenderness is a common symptom that is evident in the two breast complications.

Morrow (2000) notes that that pathophysiology, a union of pathology with physiology, refers to the functional variations associated with or ensuing from an ailment. It seeks to explain the physiological processes in which conditions like mastalgia and malignant cysts develop and progress. A comprehensive analysis of the causes of mastalgia requires the sick person’s medical history, in depth scrutiny, and inquiries. Cyclical mastalgia is the most prevalent category of this ailment. Notably, reassurance has been a common way of easing the pain in most females after couples of months. Relating the condition to mensuration cycle is exceptionally key in establishing the cause of mastalgia (The Breast Clinic: Benign Breast Disease, n.d.). Even though breast pain is not a common indicator of breast cancer, breast cancer screening is very important to women with malignant cysts in areas with low access to medical services. For women over 40, digital mammography is a clear option of investigating the condition. Such patients always suffer from non-cyclical mastalgia. Treatment of mastalgia starts from wearing a well-fitting bra to administering injections of local anesthetic on the patients. In postmenopausal females, halting Hormone Replacement Therapy may relieve severe breast pain. Breast cyst may require a simple ultrasound to confirm its state of sac filled with fluid. Again, a healthcare professional may drain the cyst upon request by the patient. The process involves smearing local anesthesia to the skin and directing an ultrasound guided needle into the sac to remove the fluid (Breast cysts, n.d.). Some sacs may fill up again, thus requiring a surgical operation for complete removal. Early screening is important as doctors can find breast cancer and treat it in time. Treatment of breast cancer has been successful with early screening when symptoms are still not visible.

Women who feels or notices the symptoms of the above conditions can report to health providers to be given some of the treatment options. For those who have not experienced the same, they should wear a supportive bra, and including flaxseed to the everyday meals can help ease the breast pain. In addition, women should change bras to ease the holding on the breasts. Controlling malignant cyst and breast pain requires continuous public awareness, as the patients can easily avoid a problem before it occurs (Mokbel, 2012). For example, an assumption of slight pain, which may result in breast cancer, can be screened in time and treated successfully.


Breast cysts. (n.d.). Web.

Mayo Clinic: Breast Pain. (2013). Web.

Mokbel, K. (2012). Understanding the causes of breast pain. Web.

Morrow, M. (2000). Evaluation of common breast problems. Ca-a Cancer Journal for Clinicians, 61(8), 2371-2378.

The Breast Clinic: Benign Breast Disease. (n.d.). Web.

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