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How Do I Choose the Best Breast Cyst Treatment?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 27 November 2016
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There are several options when it comes to breast cyst treatment, and the best one for you will depend on your unique condition and your doctor's advice. For a simple cyst that is filled with fluid, you might opt for fine-needle aspiration, which removes fluid and often resolves a cyst. In some cases, you may need to have a biopsy performed as well. Hormonal medication might be prescribed to help control cysts that are related to your menstrual cycle, while discontinuing hormone replacement therapy may help with cysts that develop because of it. Surgery is often reserved for painful, large, or worrisome cysts.

One option for breast cyst treatment is to do nothing. For example, if your doctor believes you have a simple cyst and little risk that it will prove cancerous, you may choose not to treat it. In many cases, simple breast cysts go away on their own if given time. If this is the option you choose, your doctor may want to monitor it periodically to ensure it is not growing larger or developing cancer-related changes.

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Fine-needle aspiration may be used as breast cyst treatment for a cyst that is fluid filled. In such a case, a fine needle is inserted through the breast and into the cyst. The doctor then uses the needle to drain all or most of the fluid, which gets rid of the cyst and the related symptoms. In the event that the withdrawn fluid does not include blood and the cyst resolves, this may be the extent of the treatment you need.

Sometimes withdrawing fluid from a cyst fails to resolve it, or the withdrawn fluid includes blood. In such a case, a doctor will usually have the fluid examined for the presence of cancerous cells. Likewise, if the doctor is unable to withdraw fluid, you may need further testing. For example, a doctor may recommend that you have an ultrasound study of the breast lump and the surrounding area. He may also recommend a biopsy.

In some cases, medication may be the best breast cyst treatment. This may, for example, prove to be the best option if you have breast cysts that seem to be related to your menstrual cycle and the fluctuation of hormones in your body. In such a case, your doctor may determine that the breast cyst treatment is the use of hormonal birth control. This treatment may help to control the menstrual-cycle-related hormones that are contributing to reoccurring cysts.

Hormones can also contribute to the development of breast cysts in a woman who is no longer menstruating. For example, hormone replacement therapy, often used to treat menopause-related symptoms, sometimes causes cysts to develop. In such a case, you and your doctor may discuss discontinuing the therapy.

While surgery may be an option for removing a cyst, you might feel reluctant to undergo surgery for something that is likely benign. There are some situations, however, in which surgery may prove necessary. For example, you might opt for surgery to remove a breast cyst if it is large or causing uncomfortable symptoms. Surgical removal may also prove the best treatment if your doctor thinks there is a reasonable chance the cyst is cancerous.

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