Robin Wood-Moen began writing in The Merck Manual Home Edition suggests that pain in the breasts, which accompanies menopause or even post menopause is likely attributable to hormonal changes, cysts, infection, fibrocystic changes and in rare events, breast cancer. Pain is generally not a symptom of breast cancer in the early stages, but a licensed medical professional will be able to make that determination.
Women's Health. It can come on suddenly—either a dull or stabbing pain in the breast called mastalgia. Even if you know the facts that breast pain is rarely a symptom of breast cancer the feeling can be troubling.
Breast pain is very common. A survey of women found that almost half had mild breast pain, and about 1 in 5 had severe breast pain, although most had not reported these symptoms to their doctor. Breast pain is the most common breast-related symptom for which patients seek medical treatment, and accounts for about half of breast-related office visits.
Sore breasts can be a symptom of many different health conditions. During your reproductive years, sore breasts could be a sign of pregnancy or a signal that your period is about to start. This condition is called mastalgia.
Breast pain mastalgia — a common complaint among women — can include breast tenderness, sharp burning pain or tightness in your breast tissue. The pain may be constant or it may occur only occasionally. Postmenopausal women sometimes have breast pain, but breast pain is more common in younger women who haven't completed menopause.
In most cases, breast pain is a by-product of reproductive life: Like breast swelling, it waxes and wanes during the menstrual cycle, and it's one of the first symptoms of pregnancy. Many women expect breast pain to go away after menopause. When it doesn't, they may fear they have breast cancer. Fortunately, breast pain is rarely a symptom of cancer, regardless of age.
Breast pain is a common presentation and anxiety about breast cancer may account for high attendance levels. However, the risk of malignancy is low. Breast pain may be classified as cyclic mastalgia, non-cyclic mastalgia and extramammary pain.
Understanding these changes can help you to distinguish between normal variations and something that may require medical attention. Most conditions causing change, lumps or pain are benign. The breasts respond to estrogen and progesterone during each menstrual cycle, with growth and fluid retention that can range from barely noticeable to somewhat painful.