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Mastitis is a condition that causes a woman's breast tissue to become painful and inflamed. It usually occurs in women who are breastfeeding.
Symptoms of mastitis
Mastitis usually only affects one breast and the symptoms often develop quickly. The affected area of your breast may be red, swollen, painful and hard.
Causes of mastitis
Mastitis can have different causes depending on whether it is infectious or not. Most cases of non-infectious mastitis are caused by breastfeeding problems.
Diagnosing mastitis
Your GP should be able diagnose mastitis after examining your breast and asking you about your symptoms. Sometimes, a sample of your breast milk may be tested.
Treating mastitis
Mastitis can usually be easily treated using a number of self care measures and, if necessary, adjusting your breastfeeding technique.
Complications of mastitis
In very severe cases of infectious mastitis, an abscess can develop in your breast. A breast abscess is a painful collection of pus that forms just under the skin.