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What Are Fibrocystic Breasts?

Fibrocystic breasts are composed of thick or lumpy tissue that may change the texture of the breast. The breast tissue may feel scar-like, firm, or rubbery and be noticeable through the skin. While this may sound frightening, it is actually quite common, with more than half of women experiencing fibrocystic changes in their lifetime.

Fibrocystic Breasts Symptoms

While many women with fibrocystic breasts do not notice any changes, some of the symptoms may include: 

  • Lumps or areas of thickening in the breast 
  • Breast tenderness
  • Green/brown nipple discharge
  • Similar changes in both breasts
  • Breast pain or lumps that fluctuate with your period


While there is not a cure for fibrocystic breasts, there are many ways to manage the unpleasant symptoms many women face. Work with your doctor to customize a treatment plan that is right for your body and lifestyle. An over-the-counter anti-inflammatory may be suggested to relieve short-term swelling and pain. Your doctor may also prescribe a low-estrogen birth control or a progesterone treatment to regulate your hormones. If you opt for any at-home remedies or supplements, be sure to discuss them with your doctor before adding them into your routine.

Risk Factors

In general, fibrocystic breasts are not considered harmful for women. The risk of developing breast cancer is not increased by fibrocystic changes in the breasts. However, they can make it more difficult to detect developing lumps or other cancer symptoms. This is why it is crucial to self-examine your breasts monthly in order to understand what is a normal baseline for you. 

If you notice an unusual change in one or both of your breasts, notify your doctor right away. They will conduct a routine breast exam in order to rule out possible breast conditions. If more information is needed about a lump or breast tissue, a mammogram is usually recommended. If you have any concerns, please feel free to give Little Silver Mammography and HerSpace a call (732-741-9595) to schedule an appointment.