Fibrocystic breast changes are well-treated using naturopathic medicine.
Changes in breast tissue associated with fibrocystic breasts (e.g., tissue that feels ropey or lumpy) are all normal, and experienced by more than half of women at some point in their lives, usually between the ages of 20 to 50. For this reason, use of the word “disease” has been discontinued in describing the condition.
The cause of fibrocystic breast changes is unknown, but reproductive hormones, particularly estrogen may play a role.
Seek professional healthcare if you notice new breast lumps or growth or changes in previously evaluated breast lumps.
Symptoms of Fibrocystic Breast Changes
Possible symptoms of fibrocystic breast changes include:
- Breast lumps or areas of tissue thickening
- Breast pain
- Fluctuations in size of breast lumps
- Changes usually occur in both breasts
- Changes are aggravated between mid-cycle and start of menstrual period
Treatment of Fibrocystic Breast Changes at Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine
At Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine, the goals of treatment for fibrocystic breast changes are to reduce or eliminate pain, and prevent recurrence by correcting underlying hormonal imbalances.
Conventional treatment for fibrocystic breast changes may include surgery, and variety of medications, including over-the-counter pain relievers, oral contraceptives and danazol. These treatments may have short- or long-term side effects.
For this reason, you may choose to try natural treatment to possibly avoid use of conventional medications, or together with conventional medications in order to decrease dosages of conventional medications required to manage your fibrocystic breast change symptoms.
Naturopathic treatment of any chronic health concern must be recognized as a process that involves:
- Identifying specific treatment goals
- Development by your naturopathic doctor, of a thorough understanding of all factors affecting your health, including physical, psychological, emotional and lifestyle factors
- Development of a comprehensive treatment plan
- Implementation and maintenance of that plan through periodic monitoring and adjustment
At Toronto Centre for Naturopathic Medicine, a typical approach to treating fibrocystic breast changes may be to:
- Identify and address underlying factors in your lifestyle (e.g., high-fat diet, excessive caffeine use) that may be contributing to your fibrocystic breast changes
- Reduce pain symptoms using hydrotherapy, acupuncture, Bowen Therapy, Suikodo™ or registered massage therapy
- Prevent future symptoms by “balancing” hormones using metabolic detoxification protocols or botanical (herbal) medicines
Where appropriate, a number of therapeutic options are available, to be used alone, or more often in a complementary fashion, including:
- Nutritional counseling
- Nutritional supplements
- Metabolic detoxification protocols
- Botanical (herbal) medicines
- Bowen Therapy
- Exercise prescription
- Relaxation (meditation) training
- Lifestyle medicine and counseling
- Registered massage therapy
Treatments provided by naturopathic doctors and registered massage therapists are covered by most extended healthcare plans.
Fibrocystic breasts [Internet]. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; [cited 2009 Feb 18]. Available from: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/fibrocystic-breasts/DS01070.