CausesBy Mayo Clinic Staff
Breast-feeding is a learned skill, and poor technique can lead to milk being trapped in the breast, a main cause of mastitis. Other causes include:
June 12, 2015
- A blocked milk duct. If a breast doesn't completely empty at feedings, one of your milk ducts can become clogged, causing milk to back up, which leads to breast infection.
- Bacteria entering your breast. Bacteria from your skin's surface and baby's mouth can enter the milk ducts through a break or crack in the skin of your nipple or through a milk duct opening. Stagnant milk in a breast that isn't emptied enough provides a breeding ground for the bacteria. The antibacterial properties of your milk help protect your baby from the infection.
- Dixon JM. Lactational mastitis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed April 23, 2015.
- FAQ on mastitis. La Leche League International. http://www.llli.org/FAQ/mastitis.html. Accessed April 23, 2015.
- Mastitis: Causes and management. World Health Organization. http://www.who.int/maternal_child_adolescent/documents/fch_cah_00_13/en/. Accessed April 23, 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. Mastitis. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
- Ferri FF. Mastitis. In: Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2015: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2015. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed May 28, 2015.