What does chest pain after menstruation mean?


Breast tenderness after menstruation is more common in young girls at puberty. This is due to the growth and increased sensitivity of the breast. Usually at the end of puberty, discomfort ceases. In addition to adolescent girls, chest pains are also found in adult women. In modern medicine they are called mastalgia. If such a condition during ovulation or a week before menstruation is a normal physiological phenomenon, then its continuation after menstruation should be alerted. What causes pain? In this attempt to understand the article.

Causes of chest pain after menstruation

Pains are cyclical - are characteristic in a certain period of the menstrual cycle, and non-cyclical, as a result of anatomical changes.

The main causes of mastalgia include:

Pregnancy. Increasing the concentration of progesterone in the blood after fertilization of the egg causes soreness, a feeling of heaviness, an increase in size and swelling of the mammary glands. A woman may still not suspect the birth of a new life inside, and the chest is already beginning to prepare for the upcoming lactation. In some cases, after conception, bloody discharge is observed.

This is misleading to the future mother, and she believes that her period began. In addition to progesterone, the amount of estrogen increases, which is responsible for expanding the network of blood vessels and increasing blood volume. As well as human chorionic gonadotropin (pregnancy hormone), affecting the growth of the mammary glands and the safe bearing of a child. If there is still a delay in menstruation - this is a sure sign of conception. You can confirm it using a test or ultrasound diagnosis.

Mastopathy. The pain is characteristic not only after the end of menstruation, but also before them. Most often, the disease develops due to hormonal imbalance. Dense formations are formed inside the mammary gland, which are palpable during palpation and discharge from the nipples appears. This is a fairly common disease in the age of 30 to 40 years in women. At the first symptoms, it is better to immediately contact a mammologist to rule out a complication and the transition to a malignant form. In advanced cases, surgical removal of the tumor is necessary. Treatment of mastopathy is complex and aimed at correcting hormonal levels.

Trauma and other injuries to the chest. This is an example of non-cyclical pain, which does not depend on the stage of the menstrual cycle and can occur at any time. Shocks, bruises during a fall, and other mechanical effects (including surgeries) can cause severe pain, which periodically subsides and reappears. Sometimes violations occur in nearby joints, muscle tissue or nerve endings, and pain radiates to the mammary gland.

Malignant tumors. A long time may not manifest itself in any way, then new growths and irregular chest pain occur. This condition should be the reason for the visit to the doctor, since in the early stages (before the onset of metastasis) the cancer is successfully treated.

Hormonal imbalance. If a woman has failures of the menstrual cycle, delayed menstruation, periodic pain in the lower abdomen and the mammary gland, this indicates an imbalance of hormones.

The reasons for its appearance are a large number:

  • uncontrolled use of contraceptives or other hormonal drugs,
  • infections of the breast and genital tract (syphilis),
  • stresses and nervous disorders
  • tumors of a different nature
  • hereditary factor
  • menopause
  • thyroid disease.

Fluid retention in the body. More common in women who are overweight.

Poor quality and close bra. Lingerie that is not sized or with solid inserts can also cause discomfort. In girls at puberty, this leads to delayed breast development.

Osteochondritis. The pain occurs in the area of ​​attachment of the ribs to the chest, but gives to the mammary gland. Neuralgic problems, disorders in the cardiovascular system or lungs can also cause soreness. In this case, it may be non-cyclical in nature and manifest as after menstruation, a week or two before it.

What to do with pain after menstruation?

If a healthy woman's breasts swell, increases in size and there is a delay in menstruation, you need to contact a gynecologist for an ultrasound or to do a pregnancy test. Perhaps soon she will become a mother.

In other cases, it is better to visit a mammologist to avoid the formation of pathology and find out the cause of this condition. There is no single algorithm for treating mastalgia. Therapy depends on the developmental factors and the nature of the pain. The doctor will prescribe additional studies to make an accurate diagnosis.

To reduce discomfort at home, you can use the following tips:

  1. Wear a bra in size from natural materials.
  2. To exclude from the diet fatty and salty foods. Salt contributes to the retention of fluid in the body, and this increases the swelling of the breast, and it hurts even more. Less use of coffee, chocolate and harmful products.
  3. Maintain a regular and healthy sexual relationship.
  4. Do not use hormonal contraceptives yourself. Only a doctor can accurately pick up the drug, which will help to avoid many side effects.
  5. Conduct self breast research. At least once a month you need to do breast palpation in front of a mirror. If any nodules, seals or breast shape changes, see a breast specialist. Once a year it is imperative to conduct a routine check-up with a doctor, even if nothing is bothering you.
  6. Take vitamins.

Any disease is easier to prevent or cure in the early stages than to eliminate complications by surgery or hormonal drugs. But sometimes pain causes positive changes in the body. If there is a delay in menstruation, conception may have occurred and soon another person will be born.

Fibrocystic mastopathy

Soreness and engorgement of the breast can be a symptom of fibrocystic mastopathy. The disease is characterized by impaired development of the glandular and connective tissue of the breast. The pathological process causes a deterioration in the blood supply to the mammary glands, resulting in stagnation, cysts are formed.

A cyst is a capsule with a liquid that forms in the ducts of the gland. Its size ranges from a few millimeters to several centimeters. The cyst can inflame and fester. In rare cases, its cells are reborn. Because of the ability of cysts to transform into malignant tumors, fibrocystic mastopathy is considered a precancerous condition.

The soreness of one or both mammary glands is the main symptom of fibrocystic mastopathy. Sensations are mild or intense. Together with the pain, the woman feels that her chest is swollen. The mammary gland swells and increases in size. After ovulation, breast lumps may appear. Painful sensations sometimes occur in the armpits, in the shoulder and shoulder blade from the side of the diseased breast.

Such changes in the breast tissue are due to the influence of the hormone progesterone. Most often, unpleasant symptoms stop with the onset of menstruation. However, as the disease progresses, the painful period lengthens. Mastalgia (chest pain) does not stop after menstruation.

In the later stages of the development of pathology, the chest aches throughout the entire menstrual cycle. A sick woman has neuropsychiatric disorders, exacerbated chronic diseases, and sleep is disturbed. Anxiety and anxiety about oncology appear.

Some women with fibrocystic mastopathy have serous, milky, bloody or purulent secretions from the nipples.

The disease may occur after an abortion, a large-fruited pregnancy, or an abrupt cessation of breastfeeding. The disease develops in women who do not have regular sex. It can trigger regular stress situations, endocrine diseases and liver disease.

Inflammation of the breast

The cause of chest pain after menstruation can be mastitis - an inflammatory process that occurs in the tissues of the breast.

At the early stage of the disease, the mammary gland hurts moderately. If you press it lightly, the pain increases a little. Sometimes mastitis, past independently without treatment. Breast pain gradually decreases and disappears after 1-2 weeks.

But often mastitis progresses. The chest swells, grows in size and becomes very sensitive. The pain intensifies, and seals appear in the gland. The shape of the seal resemble triangles with the top of the nipple. Above them appears red, the skin becomes hot. When mastitis can increase and hurt the nearby lymph nodes. If the disease develops, the woman's body temperature rises and tachycardia occurs (an increase in heart rate).

Mastitis most often develops in lactating women after the first birth. The cause of the disease are scratches and nipple cracks, through which pathogens penetrate. To provoke mastitis can the wrong application of the child to the breast, hypothermia of the breast or reduced immunity. Breasts are often inflamed, if time does not drain the milk.

When feeding a child, a woman with mastitis feels a sharp pain in her chest.

In non-nursing girls, the breasts may swell and become inflamed due to hypothermia, endocrine disorders, diseases of the urogenital system and chest trauma.

Intercostal neuralgia

Intercostal neuralgia is called pain syndrome caused by the pinching, irritation or inflammation of the nerve endings in the intercostal space. Inflammation of the roots of spinal nerves located near the spinal column can provoke a pathological condition.

In neuralgia, sharp and burning pain occurs in the intercostal space in the area of ​​the breast. She can give in the lower back or under the scapula. The intensity of the pain syndrome increases dramatically with a deep breath, coughing, sneezing, screaming, as well as a sudden movement of the body and physical exertion.

In some cases, the pain is felt in the breast. A neuralgic attack instantly spreads to nearby tissues and reaches the connective tissue layers of the gland that divide its lobes. The pain increases with pressure on the mammary gland.

Gradually, the illness will pass, and after a few days the pain will completely disappear. Intercostal neuralgia does not affect the state of the breast tissue.

Signs of fibroadenoma development

If your periods have passed and your chest hurts, fibroadenoma can be the cause. This is a benign neoplasm formed from an overgrown glandular breast tissue. The tumor has a round shape, soft and elastic consistency. Its value ranges from 0.2 to 7 cm. Fibroadenoma moves freely under the skin and does not cause unpleasant sensations at an early stage of development, therefore, it is often found by chance during routine examination. In case of fibroadenoma, a small amount of fluid can be released from the nipples.

If the tumor grows intensively and reaches a considerable size, pains appear in the chest, regardless of when there was menstruation. Most often, the pain occurs when the leaf-shaped form of fibroadenoma, characterized by rapid growth and sharp aching pain.

Fibroadenoma is a hormone-dependent tumor. It most often develops in girls during adolescence, in women during pregnancy, during breastfeeding, and also against the background of hormone replacement therapy during menopause.

At risk are women taking hormonal contraceptives for a long time. Fibroadenoma often occurs in girls who have an irregular menstrual cycle. Frequent abortions, a short period of breastfeeding, a sharp refusal to raise a child, diseases of internal organs and obesity increase the likelihood of developing a tumor.

Under the influence of unfavorable factors, fibroadenoma cells are able to degenerate into malignant ones. Therefore, when a tumor is detected, it is necessary to analyze its tissues. Due to the high risk of developing oncology, fibroadenoma is recommended to be removed.

Manifestations of sarcoma

If your period ends and your chest hurts, it can be a sign of developing breast sarcoma. Sarcoma is a neoplasm that grows out of the connective tissue. It is one of the fastest growing forms of malignant tumor.

It can be detected by an increase in the lymph nodes, breast deformities, seals and whitish discharge from the chest. The protruding tumor has a pineal, bumpy surface. As it grows, the skin above it becomes thinner and acquires a purple-bluish tint. It clearly distinguishes subcutaneous venous pattern. Over time, an ulcer appears over the tumor. Disintegrating sarcoma may bleed.

A tumor may grow slowly, spasmodically or rapidly. Neoplasms with a relatively favorable prognosis develop gradually. The process can take many years. If there is a rapid growth of the tumor, it reaches a large size in a month.

Sometimes the rapid development of a malignant process is accompanied by symptoms characteristic of an abscess of the breast. Abscess is a cavity in the chest, filled with pus.

And if this is a pregnancy?

The cause of chest pain may be pregnancy. 15% of girls have menstruation in the first weeks of pregnancy. Sometimes for menstrual bleeding take symptoms that occur during implantation of the ovum. When the fertilized egg descends into the uterus, it invades the cavity walls. The implantation process is accompanied by rupture of tissues and blood vessels. Most often, the bleeding is very scarce. It often goes unnoticed. However, some girls may have blood for several days.

Bleeding occurs during pregnancy if an insufficient amount of the hormone progesterone is produced in the body. It may be a sign of an approaching miscarriage.

During pregnancy, the mammary glands swell. They become very sensitive and painful. Sometimes even accidental contact with the skin of the breast causes pain. A woman feels heaviness in the mammary glands, periodically there is a sharp pain, resembling a short-term deep needle prick. After the discomfort may not pass a short time.

Other reasons

Breast engorgement and tenderness may occur after menstruation, if the girl began to take hormonal contraceptives. The drugs cause a temporary imbalance of hormonal levels, which is accompanied by unpleasant sensations. Estrogen dependent side effects disappear on their own without treatment. The adaptation period lasts from 3 to 6 months. If the sensations cause severe discomfort, you can ask the doctor to recommend drugs with a lower concentration of hormones. Change hormonal contraceptives need after the end of the menstrual cycle.

Breast tenderness may occur during hormone therapy prescribed for the treatment of the disease. If there is such a side effect, you need to inform the doctor about it.

Chest pain after menstruation is a sign of hormonal disruption in the body. It can occur as a result of severe stress, after abortion, after the abolition of hormonal contraceptives and at the beginning of menopause.

Hormonal imbalance is often the result of a chronic lack of iodine in the body. Iodine deficiency is characterized by a hormonal shift that contributes to the appearance of pain in the mammary glands. To determine the level of hormones in the body, you must donate blood for analysis. If a hormonal failure is detected, the doctor will select a corrective therapy.

The cause of discomfort in the chest can be a tight bra with metal parts that compress the chest. If underwear is not replaced in a timely manner, stagnation phenomena may occur in the breast tissue, provoking the development of various pathologies.

The pain that occurs during the period when menstruation should end is diagnosed in women who prefer to sunbathe without a bra. Excessive ultraviolet irradiation has a negative effect on breast tissue.

Soreness in the chest occurs in certain diseases of the cardiovascular system.

In a woman, the lymph nodes in the armpits can become inflamed. The pain at the same time sometimes gives to the nearby mammary gland. To make sure that the lymph node is inflamed, you need to feel it. It has an increased size and hurts with pressure. Why lymph nodes hurt, you need to find out from the doctor.

Common causes

В норме грудь может болеть во время овуляции или за несколько дней перед менструацией, но такая боль должна исчезать в первый день месячных или сразу после них. This means that the appearance of pain is not necessarily associated with any disease. It is possible that after 4 days or a little more after the onset of discomfort in the chest, menstruation occurs and the pain subsides.

If this does not happen, it burns that the estrogen level is most likely elevated in the body. Causes of chest pain after menstruation can be hormonal disruptions or changes in the body, as well as chest injuries, which coincided with menstruation. Among the hormonal causes, the following are distinguished:

  • puberty,
  • taking oral contraceptives
  • pregnancy,
  • menopause
  • hormonal drugs
  • diseases of the breast or other organs
  • sexually transmitted infections.

Frequent stress and antidepressant medication, as well as prolonged exposure to sunlight, also provoke a hormonal failure. It is known that sunbathing is beneficial in reasonable measures, but such an effect on the chest, especially on the nipple area, should be avoided. Therefore, even while on a nudist beach, it is desirable to cover the nipples. Do not forget about it in the solarium. It would be useful to apply sunscreen on the breast.

We can not exclude such factors as uncomfortable underwear. A tight bra may well cause discomfort and soreness in the glands, as well as its sharp details (bones) unduly squeeze or even damage the skin. Therefore, it is necessary to make sure that the pain after menstruation is not associated with the purchase of new underwear or the happy discovery of an old beloved, but not comfortable bra.

Non-cyclic pains have a number of differences from cyclic.

  1. Cyclic is noted in both glands, the feeling of heaviness covers them completely, non-cyclic ones are characterized by local manifestation.
  2. Cyclic can be described as a feeling of heaviness, which is accompanied by swelling of the glands, the non-cyclic has a burning sharp character.
  3. Cyclic is initially pronounced, but eventually declines, non-cyclic has a constant intensity.


Sometimes (about 15 cases out of a hundred) menstruation occurs in a pregnant woman after fertilization, and chest pain after menstruation is due to the fact that estrogen levels do not decrease, as should be normal, and this causes pain. In fact, it turns out that the pregnancy could have come a month already, but still one more menstruation is noted.

Estrogen, as mentioned above, prepares the body for pregnancy. It stimulates blood flow in the uterus, mammary glands, and also increases their size. A week after menstruation, the pain and swelling still persists, but after two weeks the discomfort and swelling disappear.

Another reason that can cause chest pain as a result of pregnancy is progesterone activity. This hormone stimulates the growth of ducts in the gland, which at the same time can be poured and sore. If the pregnancy test is negative, pain is the cause of any disease.


Mastopathy is the development of a benign neoplasm in the breast. The main reason for its occurrence is hormonal failure. Mastopathy may develop if the pregnancy is interrupted, a failure to breastfeed, and certain other predisposing factors. This disease is the reason why the chest after menstruation for a long time.

Mastitis is another disease in which the mammary glands ache. Most often it is associated with lactation and breastfeeding, however, there are times when mastitis occurs regardless of this. Mastitis is an inflammation of the mammary gland, therefore, in addition to pain, typical signs of inflammation will appear:

  • increase in local temperature
  • Breast skin may become reddish due to increased blood flow.

A more serious cause for a woman’s health is a malignant tumor. At the same time, the gland is painful at any moment of the cycle, and after the menstruation and before it. Growing up, the tumor squeezes the surrounding tissue, which provokes painful sensations. The most dangerous thing here is that tangible changes appear at rather late stages. Therefore, if the chest hurts after menstruation and even more so for a long time, it is best to contact your doctor as soon as possible to diagnose and find out the cause of the pain.

Another pathology that can cause soreness is cysts in the breast. They arise as a result of metabolic disorders of fat.

The reason why, after menstruation chest pain, may be abnormalities that are not directly related to the mammary gland. These can be menopausal disorders, osteochondrosis of the thoracic spine, or heart disease. The pain is localized in the chest area, but is given directly to the breast glands.

Other symptoms

Sometimes chest pain may not stop there. Soreness may be accompanied by discharge from the nipples, and the nipples may be positioned asymmetrically. This is especially characteristic of the development of tumors and cysts, as the size and shape of the gland, in which the pathological process develops, vary.

Palpation in this case may reveal a seal. In the case of neoplasms, pain increases with time. Such signs are easily detected at a routine examination by a gynecologist, so it is important to visit him regularly.

Causes of pain in the mammary gland, which does not stop with the beginning of menstruation or with their end, may be pregnancy, hormonal disorders or diseases of the gland. First of all, you can conduct a pregnancy test, and if the test is negative, it will be a diagnostic criterion for the doctor.

But in some cases, a negative test may be unreliable. In any case, if after menstruation the chest began to hurt or continues to hurt from the moment before the onset of menstruation and does not stop, this is a reason to consult a doctor to determine the cause of the pain. It is necessary to begin treatment as soon as possible.