A common minor health problem among women. Normally manifests as shooting pains in the breast tissue. It is essentially harmless and is due to the type of fat that the breast is made from (according to a G.P.).

It is advised that women who suffer from it take either Evening Primrose Oil or Starflower Oil supplements in high doses (1000 iu) on a regular basis.

These supplements are recommended for a variety of women's health problems and do work in preventing mastitis if taken for over a month.

In contrast to the W/U above I'd say mastitis is rare in non-lactating women and not that common among lactating women. I believe the gazelle may be referring to breast pain (mastalgia) which can have many causes but is not in and of itself an infection nor inflammation.

Mastitis can be inflammatory or infectious or both. It is associated with hard, swollen, painful areas of the breast. It is associated with flu-like symptoms systemically.

  • It is treated with anti-inflammatory drugs like NSAIDs and often with antibiotics.
  • Rest and lots of fluids are also needed.
  • Antibiotic treatment is not always necessary as there is not always a bacterial component.
  • The breast should be emptied of milk frequently, by breastfeeding or by pump if baby is unable to nurse.
  • The milk is almost never infected with anything that will harm the baby but rather the bacteria present are of a type normally found on skin and inactivated by stomach acids.
  • Bilateral mastitis has been found to be sometimes caused by dangerous bacteria and may be an indication for temporary pumping and dumping of breastmilk until antibiotic treatment has begun.

Unresolved mastitis can lead to decreased milk supply, premature weaning and/or breast abscesses.

Mas*ti"tis (?), n. [Gr. breast + -itis.] Med.

Inflammation of the breast.


© Webster 1913.

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