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Thread: Huge hard spot in breast

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    41

    Default Huge hard spot in breast

    Hi all,

    My LO is ten weeks old, and this week I seem to have gotten a clogged duct. This is the second time this has happened, and both times my first clue was when I started getting chills and found I had a fever. Last time there was one specific tender spot--I could feel a knot where the clogged duct was. This time, however, it seems like that whole outer side of my left breast is strangely firm. There are a couple more tender spots, but not specific knots like I could feel before... Just this giant golf ball firmness, most of which doesn't hurt but a few spots on the perimeter do. Like last time, my fever was low grade and only lasted one night. I've been trying to nurse him on that side as often as I can. It does get softer when he feeds, but that big lump/firm spot is mostly still there even after a long feed. I'm paranoid about getting mastitis, so I've been feeding him a lot, trying to massage the spot (hard when I don't know exactly what's clogged), and massaging in the shower with hot water. Is this enough? How many days before a lump like this becomes concerning?

    My supply has leveled off a lot, so before this my breast was pretty soft unless it was really full. It's annoying though because my left already produces more than my right, and now with all this extra feeding on the left and slight neglect of the right I know it's going to make the imbalance worse.:/

    FWIW, LO eats every 1.5-2.5hrs during the day, and usually has one nighttime stretch of 4-5.5 hrs. (Yesterday it was much more frequently than that because he was upset from some shots so we spent most of the day in bed nursing and sleeping.) I feed him roughly 10 times a day, so my breasts should be emptying enough... don't know why I keep getting clogs on the left, except maybe that it's the higher producer. :/

    Anyways, am I treating this aggressively enough? Is it weird to have such a big area of firmness with a plugged duct? How long before it should go away(and if it doesn't I start worrying?
    Last edited by @llli*reading.mom; July 4th, 2013 at 06:00 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    5,644

    Default Re: Huge hard spot in breast

    Plugs can be very large. You can also have multiple plugs going on. Some moms are just prone to plugs, or if it keeps happening in the same spot it could be from a too tight bra, diaper bag strap, seatbelt, sleeping on that side-basically, anything that will put pressure on that area. I got a plug that turned into mastitis from my seatbelt and baby taking a long sleep during a longish car ride when my baby was 6 months old!
    The old LLL mantra for plugs/mastitis is "empty breast, lots of rest." So keep doing what you are doing nursing-wise-remember you can never nurse too often. Ever. and SLEEP of you can, LIE DOWN if you can't sleep or SIT if you can't lie down. For working out the plugs, vibration can really help. Here are several tips:

    http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...plugsblebs.pdf

    and mastitis: http://www.llli.org/docs/00000000000...atcanyoudo.pdf

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Posts
    41

    Default Re: Huge hard spot in breast

    The vibration is a great idea -- we have a hand massager and I used it last night and it seemed to help. Was a nice change from hand massage. Seems to be slowly working its way out...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    1,293

    Default Re: Huge hard spot in breast

    i used a heating pad on the area and massaged whenever i could. also massage and kind of "rake" your fingers down your breast in the shower and hand express in there too. try to also nurse with your son's chin below the area. i have laid my son down and then nursed him upside down to have his chin in the right area, where he would be sucking mostly aimed at the spot if that makes sense.

    keep at it and feel better.

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