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Breast Abscess

Kelley V. Lawrence, MD, IBCLC, FAAFP, FABM, Shannon A. Sanchez Oviedo, MD, MS and Elizabeth Joyce Trout, MD, MLS Reviewed 06/2020
 


BASICS

DESCRIPTION

  • Localized accumulation of infected fluid within the breast parenchyma

  • Associated with lactation or fistulous tracts secondary to squamous epithelial neoplasm or duct occlusion

  • System(s...

DIAGNOSIS

HISTORY

  • Tender breast lump, usually unilateral

  • Breastfeeding, weaning, or returning to work

  • Decreased breast milk supply on affected breast

  • Perimenopausal/postmenopausal

  • Systemic malaise (usually...

TREATMENT

GENERAL MEASURES

  • Cold and/or warm compresses for pain control (3)[C]

  • Continue to breastfeed or express milk to drain the affected breast (3)[A]

  • Antibiotic treatment without puerperal abscess dr...

ONGOING CARE

  • If lactational, continue effective milk removal to prevent recurrence

  • If planning to wean from breastfeeding, avoid abrupt discontinuation of feeding

  • Consider smoking cessation to decrease ...

REFERENCES

1
Lam E, Chan T, Wiseman SM. Breast abscess: evidence based management recommendations. Expert Rev Anti Infect Ther.  2014;12(7):753–762. [View Abstract on OvidMedline]
2
David M, Handa P...

CODES

ICD10

  • N61 Inflammatory disorders of breast

  • O91.13 Abscess of breast associated with lactation

  • O91.12 Abscess of breast associated with the puerperium

  • O91.119 Abscess of breast associated with pregna...

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • Up to 11% of cases of puerperal mastitis progress to abscess formation (most often due to inadequate therapy).

  • Risk factors for mastitis result from milk stasis (poor milk transfer, inf...

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