Q. Though the lump in my breast decrease on antibiotics, it is still tender. Could it be cancer?

Answered by
Dr. Ashaq Hussain Parrey
and medically reviewed by Dr. Vinodhini. J
This is a premium question & answer published on Feb 12, 2020 and last reviewed on: Feb 17, 2020

Hello doctor,

I am a 25-year-old female. My BMI is 22, I am a non-smoker with no ongoing conditions like diabetes. I am not breastfeeding and have never been pregnant. I developed mastitis very suddenly about three weeks ago, by that evening I was in A and E with a lump the size of an egg in one breast. I was prescribed Cocodamol and 500 mg Flucloxacillin a day. After the first course which was 10 days, I saw the doctor again as the lump had reduced to the size of a large grape but was still painful, I often had fevers and I felt unwell. Doctor put me on another seven-day course of Flucloxacillin and booked a breast cancer screening.

I just finished my second course and I am still in pain, with lump still the size of a small grape, and still feel ill and feel like I am getting worse again. Breast is back to being red and swollen. My only option to see a medical professional before my breast screening is to wait for several hours at an urgent care clinic after work.

Should I try and get more antibiotics? If so should I insist on getting a different kind? Also please be honest, I know there is a chance it could be IBC but as a young, healthy, childless woman, is it actually likely that I should prepare for bad news or not?



Welcome to

Let me assure you that there are no cancers which come suddenly and settles with antibiotics. One breast cancer which progresses over a few period is inflammatory carcinoma of the breast but it does not come in days and settle with antibiotics. You have a breast abscess that settled with antibiotics and some times a part of it gets walled with fibrous tissue were antibiotics do not reach it is called antibioma. I would suggest you take Linezolid 600 mg twice a day as there are chances of resistance to Flucloxacillin.

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