Nipple discharge refers to any fluid that flows out of the nipple of the breast.
Nipple discharge may be milky, non-milky and non-bloody, or bloody. A non-milky nipple discharge can be clear, yellow, green, gray, or brown (and not bloody). A bloody nipple discharge is red in color.
The nipple discharge, whatever it is, comes out of the breasts through the same nipple openings that carry milk during pregnancy.
The color of the nipple discharge is an important clue to the diagnosis of the breast health concern.
A nipple discharge can be due to the following (more common cause in the Philippines):
Milky discharge – lactating breast
Non-milky discharge without an accompanying breast mass – fibrocystic breast changes or ductal ectasia.
Bloody discharge without an accompanying breast mass – small intraductal papilloma or breast cancer; bloody discharge with an accompanying solid breast mass – breast cancer.
Nipple Discharge – Non-milky and Non-bloody – How to Deal
For non-milky and non-bloody nipple discharge, without an accompanying breast mass, no diagnostic test is needed if fibrocystic breast changes is considered.
For non-milky and non-bloody nipple discharge, the treatment is just watchful waiting or observation. No medicine is needed. It may or may not disappear in due time. If it does not and if it is due to a fibrocystic breast changes, then there is nothing to worry about. Just let it be. Don’t worry. Just continue to do watchful waiting and observe. Have a regular check-up with a breast specialist though.