Blood in Breast Milk
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Reviewed By:

Alice Police, MD

Alice Police, MD (Breast Surgery)

Breast Surgeon of 30 years experience. Recent Chief of breast surgery at UCIrvine Medical Center, Northwell Health in New York State, Chief of breast surgery at Monument Health in Rapid City South Dakota. Breast Cancer Researcher in conjunction with multiple studies through Notre Dame department of electrical engineering. CMO of Nearwave, a start up breast cancer device company.

Yoshinori Abe, MD

Yoshinori Abe, MD (Internal Medicine)

Dr. Abe graduated from The University of Tokyo School of Medicine in 2015. He completed his residency at the Tokyo Metropolitan Health and Longevity Medical Center. He co-founded Ubie, Inc. in May 2017, where he currently serves as CEO & product owner at Ubie. Since December 2019, he has been a member of the Special Committee for Activation of Research in Emergency AI of the Japanese Association for Acute Medicine. | | Dr. Abe has been elected in the 2020 Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia Healthcare & Science category.

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Content updated on Apr 4, 2024

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  • Blood-stained breast milk

  • Blood in my breast milk

  • Breast milk has blood

  • Blood in breastmilk

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About the Symptom

Any bleeding from the nipple at any time should be evaluated by a physician unless there is an obvious reason like recent trauma. Bleeding can look brown or dark red or bright red and can be a little or a lot. Bleeding in breast milk can look pink. The most common way to find bleeding is spots on the bra. The most common cause of bleeding in breast milk is trauma to the nipples from the baby or a breast pump. It is not necessary to stop breast feeding or pumping.

When to see a doctor

Seek professional care if you experience any of the following symptoms

  • Recent weight loss

Possible Causes

Generally, Blood in breast milk can be related to:

  • Breast Cancer

    Breast cancer is a malignancy that arises in the breasts of men or women. It can arise from ducts or lobules. Patients either find a lump or have an abnormal mammogram. Risk factors include being female, having breasts, have a genetic predisposition (eg a gene you inherit from a parent), family history of breast or ovarian cancer, getting older, personal history of breast biopsies, dense breasts on mammography, or ovarian cancer, alcohol, and obesity. Protective factors include pregnancy, especially at a younger age, weight maintenance especially after menopause, and exercise.

Doctor's Diagnostic Questions

Your doctor may ask these questions to check for this symptom:

  • Is there blood in your breast milk?

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References

  • Nakshatri, H., Bhat-Nakshatri, P., Kumar, B., Simpson, E., Ludwig, K. K., Cox, M. L., Gao, H., & Liu, Y. (2020). Breast cancer cell detection and characterization from breast milk-derived cells. Cancer Research, 80(21), 4828–4839. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7642166/

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7642166/

Reviewed By:

Alice Police, MD

Alice Police, MD (Breast Surgery)

Breast Surgeon of 30 years experience. Recent Chief of breast surgery at UCIrvine Medical Center, Northwell Health in New York State, Chief of breast surgery at Monument Health in Rapid City South Dakota. Breast Cancer Researcher in conjunction with multiple studies through Notre Dame department of electrical engineering. CMO of Nearwave, a start up breast cancer device company.

Yoshinori Abe, MD

Yoshinori Abe, MD (Internal Medicine)

Dr. Abe graduated from The University of Tokyo School of Medicine in 2015. He completed his residency at the Tokyo Metropolitan Health and Longevity Medical Center. He co-founded Ubie, Inc. in May 2017, where he currently serves as CEO & product owner at Ubie. Since December 2019, he has been a member of the Special Committee for Activation of Research in Emergency AI of the Japanese Association for Acute Medicine. | | Dr. Abe has been elected in the 2020 Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia Healthcare & Science category.

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