Mastalgia: a 3 year Australian study

Aust N Z J Surg. 1994 May;64(5):329-31. doi: 10.1111/j.1445-2197.1994.tb02221.x.


Mastalgia is a common but often poorly understood condition with little Australian data available on the subject. Details are presented of 170 patients who have attended a specific mastalgia clinic at the Princess Alexandra Hospital, Brisbane, Queensland, over a 3 year period. The aims and management protocol of the clinic are outlined. The mastalgia sufferer in this study had an average age of 42 years and 87% were multiparous. Cyclical pain occurred in 59% as determined by a daily pain record chart. Unilateral pain occurred in 38%. Lack of previous breast feeding and low levels of regular physical exercise were identified as two significant factors in the history of those attending the clinic. The responses to treatments are outlined. Response rates of 18 and 26% to two commonly used 'natural products', Vitamin B6 and Evening Primrose Oil, respectively, are considered little better than placebo effect. A complete response was achieved in 67% of women who took low dose danazol with minimal side effects. The overall response rate to all treatments was 65% with a mean follow up of 15.5 months for those women who continued to attend the clinic. For women with mastalgia, a systematic approach can achieve relief of pain.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / therapeutic use
  • Breast Diseases / therapy*
  • Danazol / therapeutic use
  • Fatty Acids, Essential / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Linoleic Acids
  • Oenothera biennis
  • Pain / classification
  • Pain / physiopathology
  • Pain Management
  • Pain Measurement
  • Parity
  • Plant Oils
  • Progesterone / therapeutic use
  • Pyridoxine / therapeutic use
  • Tamoxifen / therapeutic use
  • Treatment Outcome
  • gamma-Linolenic Acid


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Fatty Acids, Essential
  • Linoleic Acids
  • Plant Oils
  • Tamoxifen
  • evening primrose oil
  • Progesterone
  • gamma-Linolenic Acid
  • Pyridoxine
  • Danazol