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Thread: Feeling sick w/Plugged Duct - Mastitis?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Feeling sick w/Plugged Duct - Mastitis?

    The 2nd time it happened I thought it was just a coincidence, but now that I’ve gone through probably the 5th or 6th bout of this, I know it’s not….

    Whenever I get a plugged duct, within a day I end up feeling sick – general malaise, joint aches, headache, feverish (though I don’t think I have much of a fever), and of course local pain around the pugged duct. Yesterday I noticed that the skin overlying the whole area was reddish, too (in a broad area, not streaky). These symptoms usually last a full day beyond the duct unplugging, although feelings of illness have extended into a second day, and tenderness always persists a couple days.

    I don’t think I get nearly sick enough nor am I in enough pain that I have infectious mastitis, but haven’t read about systemic symptoms like this with simple plugged ducts. I'm wondering if I’m the only one, and what ‘s going on? Is this actually mastitis, and should I be doing something about it?

    (Incidentally, it’s the same duct that plugs all the time, despite use of lecithin daily. The first several times it plugged last year, I did not get these symptoms, other than local pain.)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    Default Re: Feeling sick w/Plugged Duct - Mastitis?

    Hi momma2bgtwinsplus1,
    How uncomfortable! You mentioned this happening several times. All recently?
    Perhaps check out these links below. The first one talks a bit about the difference between sore breasts, plugged ducts and breast infections, as well as some tips on how initial care.
    The second link is FAQ on repeated mastitis.


    Let me know if this helps or if there's more info you would like.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Re: Feeling sick w/Plugged Duct - Mastitis?

    Not sure how to define "how uncomfortable". It's pain, but not awful. Mild pain when not touching the area, but very tender when bumped or when I would attempt to express MM. Currently, it's completely fine. No pain.

    The several episodes have occurred mostly in the last 3-4 months or so. Really haven't kept track. I think the very first time the duct plugged (but didn't cause the malaise, joint pain, and fever) was in April when the twins were 12mo. I was out for the evening and wore a well-fitted regular underwire bra (which I'd worn before with no problem). I'm 34G if that's any help. I've avoided underwires since. I had plugged duct after plugged duct back then. Repeatedly had to open milk blebs for several weeks on both nipples, especially the right I think. Yuk. That's not happened again for a long time now.

    On two recent occasions the ?mastitis? occureed, I had not completely "emptied" because my kids were nursing erratically, I think. It was on the weekend each of those times, and I don't pump on weekends but do AM's during the work week after nursing. This last time it happened I had worn a bra with poor support but not at all binding. I only wore it a few hours in the evening when I went out, and nursed when I got home. Late that night it was sore in the usual area on the right, and voila -- plugged duct in the AM. Nursed and felt better (not normal), but by noon was starting to feel "off" and rapidly sicker over the next several hours with chills, malaise, etc. -- but then improving after that. Still mildly "sick" the next day, but fine other than breast soreness the next day.

    I know it's going to happen again and am not looking forward to it. This last time I even thought to myself, this is enough to make me give up nursing if this goes on. I am under tremendous personal stress (not likely to improve real soon), but I feel I cope w it well. Doubt I'm anemic (no AF yet!) and don't smoke. From what I've read it probably is mild (non-infectious?) mastitis, but I don't know what else to do to prevent this from recurring except be more careful w my bra choice.

    Any other recommendations? Do you think it's mastitis, and if so, do I need to do anything about it? (Hate taking antibiotics unless I really, really have to.)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2006

    Default Re: Feeling sick w/Plugged Duct - Mastitis?

    You could try talking to your dr to see if Lethicin supplements would be helpful and compatible with you. There is research that says it can be helpful in the treatment of reoccurring mastitis.
    If I ever got mastitis again here is what I would use as a check list for myself:

    1. Has my baby been biting me?
    2. Am I carrying anything heavy on one side or another? A bag, a purse, a baby carrier.
    3. What positions am I nursing in, do I need to switch it up more regularly?
    4. What sort of bra am I wearing?
    5. Am I nursing frequently enough?
    6. Have i had any type of nipple trauma lately?

    If you have a fever that is sustained and over a 100 I would call a dr.

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