Why Do I Have Tenderness And Tingling In Just One Breast?

Question

Asked by Darlene

Why Do I Have Tenderness And Tingling In Just One Breast?

My breasts are tender and tingle much like when I was breastfeeding. I'm not pregnant, nor is it time for my menstrual period. I'm 36 and last breastfed over a year ago. Why do I have this sensation in only one of my breasts?

Answer

Since you're asking this question on our breast cancer site, I assume you're worried about cancer. What you describe isn't a typical breast cancer symptom. While breast soreness can sometimes be a precursor to inflammatory breast cancer, the condition is very rare; and it fairly quickly becomes obviously more serious, with swelling, redness, and pain. So please don't stress too much about this being cancer.

Tenderness and tingling in the breast is often experienced as part of your menstrual cycle or when breastfeeding, as you say. But what usually causes these sensations are hormones - specifically, changes in hormone levels. Your breasts are sensitive, and your endocrine system (which controls your hormones) is complex. So you may not feel sensations related to hormone levels in both of your breasts at once.

Tingling can also be a nerve issue. Again, the nervous system is complicated, and your breasts are filled with nerves; so it's just as likely for one breast to tingle as both.

Whatever is causing both this tenderness and tingling can only be identified by a doctor, so best to make an appointment. If your GP can't figure out what's going on, ask for a referral to a breast specialist, for a second opinion. As with any change in your breasts, it would be good to identify its cause.

Answered by PJ Hamel