How is postpartum mastitis treated?

Updated: Oct 11, 2019
  • Author: Andy W Wong, MD; Chief Editor: Bruce M Lo, MD, MBA, CPE, RDMS, FACEP, FAAEM, FACHE  more...
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Answer

The Academy of Breastfeeding Medicine recommends frequent and effective milk removal in managing mastitis (most important step) or fluid mobilization. [16]  Supportive measures include rest, adequate fluids, and nutrition. [16] Also use local measures, such as ice packs, analgesics, and breast support. [13]

Administer a penicillinase-resistant antibiotic such as cephalexin, dicloxacillin or cloxacillin, or clindamycin in penicillin-allergic patients. [13]

The mother should be told to continue to breastfeed the baby. [16] Continued breastfeeding prevents breast engorgement and subsequent pain.

If a breast abscess is present, or breastfeeding is not possible, a breast pump should be used in lactating women. [13]

Mastitis could lead to abscess formation, which may require surgical drainage.


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