No treatment is necessary for simple breast cysts — those that are fluid-filled and don't cause any symptoms — that are confirmed on breast ultrasound or after a fine-needle aspiration. If the lump persists or feels different over time, follow up with your doctor.
Fine-needle aspiration may diagnose and treat a breast cyst if your doctor removes all the fluid from the cyst at the time of diagnosis, your breast lump disappears and your symptoms resolve.
For some breast cysts, however, you may need to have fluid drained more than once. Recurrent or new cysts are common. If a breast cyst persists through two to three menstrual cycles and grows larger, see your doctor for further evaluation.
Using birth control pills (oral contraceptives) to regulate your menstrual cycles may help reduce the recurrence of breast cysts. But because of possible significant side effects, birth control pills or other hormone therapy, such as tamoxifen, is usually only recommended in women with severe symptoms. Discontinuing hormone therapy after menopause may also help prevent breast cysts.
Surgery to remove a breast cyst is necessary only in unusual circumstances. Surgery may be considered if an uncomfortable breast cyst recurs month after month or if a breast cyst contains blood-tinged fluid or shows other worrisome signs.
Oct. 08, 2015
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