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Breast Cyst

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Last updated November 9, 2021

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What is a breast cyst?

A breast cyst is a round or oval fluid-filled sac (like a tiny balloon) inside the breast. Breast cysts are common in women. They can be painless or they may cause a little pain, but they are usually benign (not cancerous). Cysts tend to get bigger and more painful just before the start of your menstrual period. Some women are more likely to have cysts than others. It’s important to get new cysts checked out by a doctor to make sure they’re not cancerous.

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You should see a doctor within the next few days to evaluate the lump. Your doctor will do a physical breast exam, and may recommend an ultrasound or mammogram. Sometimes a biopsy is needed to rule out other causes. If the cyst is uncomfortable, the fluid can be removed (aspirated) with a fine needle. The fluid might come back and some cysts just go away over time. If a cyst continues to bother you, it can be surgically removed.

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