Breast pain isn’t just a menstrual complaint

Although menopause eliminates the breast pain and swelling associated with menstrual periods, that doesn't mean that breast pain disappears forever, reports the July issue of Harvard Women's Health Watch. Breast pain unrelated to the hormonal changes of the menstrual cycle can raise fears of breast cancer—at any age. Fortunately, cancer is seldom the cause. Harvard Women's Health Watch says that noncyclical breast pain is more likely a symptom of one of these conditions: Harvard Women's Health Watch reports that treatments include ice packs, warm compresses, massage, and occasional use of pain relievers. Many women report relief from avoiding nicotine and caffeine. Some research has shown that a very-low-fat diet (15%–20% of daily calories from fat) can reduce breast tenderness and swelling.
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