My chest hurts in the middle of the cycle: is there something wrong with me or is it normal?


In the article we will look at why a chest hurts in the middle of a cycle.

Many women, especially those who have not given birth to a child, have tenderness and swelling of the mammary glands during ovulation. The skin on the chest is stretched, and the nipples become hypersensitive. Touching the chest during this period is quite painful. Let's try to understand the causes of this phenomenon and the diseases leading to it.

So why the chest in the middle of a cycle hurts?

Reproductive system during ovulation

The middle of the menstruation cycle occurs on the 9-14 day. It is during this period that the woman’s body is most ready for fertilization. In the middle of the cycle, hormones change, due to the fact that the follicle, matured in the ovary, releases an egg, which requires an increased amount of estrogen. This process is caused by a hormonal shift, which explains the fact that the chest swelled in the middle of the cycle.

Prolactin and estrogen

Hormones such as prolactin and estrogen are responsible for the growth of the egg, so in the first half of the cycle their number increases. After the egg is released, progesterone is produced and the endometrial layer begins to grow, that is, the body creates optimal conditions for conception. Breast, like other organs of the reproductive system, during ovulation is in a state of hormonal surge, which is manifested by pain in the mammary glands.

Their properties

Many women ask the gynecologist a question about pain in the middle of the menstrual cycle, that is, before ovulation. Some patients can determine the approximation of egg maturation precisely by sensations in the mammary glands. They begin to grow, like the endometrium of the uterus.

The milk ducts do not expand permanently, the gland tissues first increase and then decrease. The nipples in the middle of the cycle hurt as a response to dilatation of the ducts and tension of the skin.

The peak of growth of hormones in the female body is marked by the middle of the cycle and the swelling of the breast. After that, the body understands that the fertilization process did not take place and the breast returns to its former state.

Prolactin is a hormone that is responsible for the process of breastfeeding. After the onset of pregnancy, it is prolactin that prepares the mammary glands of a woman for the further lactation process. During ovulation, the amount of prolactin increases to maximum levels, since the body is mobilized to save pregnancy. This hormone promotes the growth of tissue during ovulation.

Estrogen is a hormone through which the reproductive system of the female body functions. The follicular apparatus secretes estrogen and removes the mature egg cell from the follicle. In addition, the hormone is involved in the expansion and formation of the milk ducts. That is why the chest hurts in the middle of the cycle.

Pain in the middle of the cycle can cause anxiety in a woman. The engorgement and pain may persist in the chest for several days after ovulation, and sometimes until the beginning of the next cycle. A similar phenomenon is called mastodynia in medicine and is characterized by the hardening of the mammary glands. In this case, the condition is considered to be the preceding stage of mastopathy and requires an appeal to a specialist.

If your chest hurts badly in the middle of the cycle, the doctor will help you determine the cause.

When the levels of estrogen and prolactin rise to elevated levels, the woman feels pain both during ovulation and until the end of the cycle. As soon as progesterone enters the process, pain and swelling disappear. In the second half of the menstrual cycle, this hormone inhibits the properties of prolactin and estrogen and contributes to the normalization of the structure of the mammary glands, returning them elasticity and softness.

The mammary glands are composed not only of glandular tissues, but also of blood vessels and nerve endings. The area around the nipples is especially sensitive, so the most intense pain syndrome is in this part of the chest. When gland tissue proliferates, squeezing of the blood vessels occurs and swelling occurs. In addition, the squeezing of nerve endings leads to pain.

It should be borne in mind that factors provoking a situation where a chest in the middle of a cycle is very sore may have a different genesis. If the discomfort persists for a long time, you should consult a doctor to rule out possible pathologies.

If the pain syndrome during ovulation is accompanied by edema and becomes intolerable, it is allowed to take drugs that have an analgesic effect. In this case, naproxen, ibuprofen or acetylsalicylic acid known to everyone is considered to be the most effective. Abuse these drugs is not worth it, take them only when absolutely necessary. Reception can be carried out only in the event that the doctor has excluded pathological processes. During the planning period of pregnancy, it is not recommended to take painkillers, as in the period of carrying a child.

Many women wonder what day they do breast ultrasound. About this below.

other methods

In addition, there are also other methods of pain relief during the menstrual cycle:

1. Contraceptive drugs. With their help, it is possible to adjust the menstrual cycle and relieve pain. The selection of oral contraceptives is a rather complicated process that requires an individual approach. Some drugs in this group can also cause pain, which is explained by a change in prolactin and estrogen.

2. Food supplements containing magnesium. Also, doctors prescribe various vitamin complexes. Magnesium nourishes the nervous system and eliminates the pain before the onset of menstruation.

3. Refusal of caffeine containing beverages. Coffee, tea and caffeine-based energy products can exacerbate symptoms by causing over-stimulation of the nervous system.

It is impossible to self-treat pain in the chest, because taking painkillers can complicate the diagnosis of diseases. In some cases, prescribed mammography. The price of this procedure is quite high.

Pathological processes

There are a number of pathological conditions that can cause the appearance of pain in the chest in the middle of the menstrual cycle:

1. Stagnant fluid. Under pressure, the tissues stretch, causing tingling and soreness. Nipples can hurt after ovulation occurs. Fluid buildup can be caused by the abuse of carbonated drinks, alcohol and salty foods. An unbalanced diet can also lead to pain, due to a lack of protein and an excess of carbohydrates and fats. In addition, wearing tight underwear can lead to stagnant fluid. Lymph nodes that are in the armpits should not be stitched with seams on clothes, as they are responsible for the outflow of fluid. The main signs of stagnation of fluid in the chest is a pulling sensation, swelling of the mammary glands and covering the skin with a blue mesh of blood vessels.

2. Mastodynia. This pathology can also lead to breast swelling, discomfort and pain. For mastodynia, cutting pains and severe engorgement of the mammary glands are characteristic. Before fertilization, the female reproductive system begins an active synthesis of prolactin and estrogen, which causes dilation of the ducts in the mammary glands. In the second half of the menstrual cycle, progesterone is secreted, which normalizes the milk ducts. If progesterone levels are low, the chest starts to hurt in the middle of the cycle.

3. Cancer disease. The most dangerous pathology, characterized by painful sensations in the mammary glands. If a woman has found a seal in her chest, you should immediately contact a breast specialist. The main difficulty is that with oncology, tenderness in the mammary glands indicates an advanced stage of the disease and requires surgical intervention. Doctors recommend to carry out breast palpation independently for the timely detection of pathology.

4. Disruption of hormonal balance. Deficiency or excess of one or another hormone can provoke tenderness in the mammary glands. At the same time, along with soreness in the chest, there may be a pulling sensation in the lower abdomen, dry vagina, general malaise and other symptoms. At the same time, the breast ducts are in a constantly expanded state, and the gland tissues are enlarged. Treatment consists of taking hormonal drugs that restore balance and regulate the menstrual cycle.

What day do breast ultrasound?

The state of the mammary glands is in direct connection with the phases of the menstrual cycle. In order for the results of the examination to be most accurate, breast ultrasound should be done immediately after the end of menstruation, before the onset of ovulation (approximately 5-12 days after the start of the cycle). At this time, there are no edemas in the chest, the ductal network is most clearly visible. In the second half of the cycle, the breast becomes swollen and more dense, which is associated with the preparation of the body for the onset of pregnancy.

Alarming symptoms

If a woman is worried about pain in the chest area on the background of the approaching menstruation, you should visit a gynecologist and a breast specialist to rule out serious pathologies. At the same time there are a number of signs, against which it is necessary to immediately visit a specialist:

1. The mammary glands are abnormally enlarged.

2. Long lasting soreness.

3. Feeling of heaviness and hardening of the chest.

4. Breast compaction with palpation.

5. Pains are paroxysmal.

6. Other symptoms, such as lethargy, uncharacteristic discharge, pain in the head, nausea.


The main prevention of breast problems is a regular visit to the gynecologist and mammologist.

Most likely they will prescribe a mammogram. The price of this procedure is quite high. Cost fluctuations on this X-ray study reach several times. So, for example, the lower bound of the price of a mammography starts from 1,500 rubles, and the upper ones can reach 8 thousand rubles.

Such a big difference is mainly due to the venue and the level of equipment available.

This is the only way to timely identify pathological processes and take the necessary measures. A woman must responsibly approach their own health.

We looked at why a chest hurts in the middle of a cycle.

Mid-cycle and major changes in the female genital area

In popular publications, considering the menstrual cycle (m. Cent.) Women, the authors proceed from the fact that:

In this case, the middle of the cycle is considered 14 days from its beginning. Changes in hormonal background woman feels for 9-14 days. If your m. longer, its middle may fall on the 14-17 day of the cycle, if it is shorter then on 8-10.

Significantly the middle of the cycle is the readiness of your body to fertilize. This means that the follicle in your ovary is ripe and ready to burst, freeing the egg cell. The peak of estrogen activity during this period spurs the process of egg release, and at the same time:

The hormone prolactin, which prepares the female breast for possible feeding, is also involved in the process. Under the influence of hormones, the breast “picks up” the fluid, its ducts dilate, the size increases. In the second half of the cycle, the process gradually comes to naught, reaching the state of "hormonal rest."

Normally, these phenomena are almost invisible to women. If the discomfort develops into pain and additional symptoms appear, we are talking about cyclic mastodynia.

Why does the chest ache after the peak of estrogen and prolactin release, when the process should go into decline? Because the amount of these hormones in women can be very large. And their activity is maintained until the end of the ovulatory period, and even until the end of the cycle.

In addition, there is a third hormone - progesterone. It begins to be produced when the egg leaves the follicle, preparing the endometrium for the possible introduction of the embryo. Its increase contributes to breast sensitization.

Can the chest hurt until the middle of the cycle and in its second phase? Of course it can. But if your chest hurts badly with each menstruation, the pain radiates to the shoulder or under the scapula, the gland swells up to the state of one big seal, probably - this is mastopathy.

If there are additional symptoms: headache, fainting, abdominal pain, uncontrolled mood swings, we are talking about premenstrual syndrome, a serious hormonal failure and the need for treatment.

Causes of pain

The mammary gland is an organ densely braided with vessels and nerves. With fluid retention in the tissues, the vessels and nerves are compressed - this is the reason that from the middle of the cycle the mammary glands of the woman become hypersensitive.

The SAH zone (nipple and areolar circle) is particularly rich in nerve endings. This ensures the erogenicity of this zone and makes it painfully sensitive in the run-up to menstruation.

However, remember the pain, especially strong - not the norm. Mastodynia can be a sign of developing mastopathy. PMS signals a violation of the hormonal system of a woman.

Causes of increased pain may be physiological, such as pregnancy. In this case, women often:

  • sore nipples,
  • nauseous
  • there is a strong rumbling along the intestines,
  • disturbed before that familiar and favorite smells,
  • taste habits change
  • do not come monthly.

All these signs accompany pseudo-fermentity. Mental disorder inherent in women with a "fine organization" of the psyche, for whom pregnancy has become a welcome, but not achievable, miracle. In this case, women need medical help.

If the chest is swollen and sore, the areola is itching, redness and flaking appears, you notice a discharge from the nipple, you may have been infected with a fungal infection. During the period of "hormones riot," fungal microflora actively reproduces, and delivers maximum discomfort.

Sensitive breasts are often found in women who choose the wrong underwear. Synthetics as a material of bra and small size of cups will make any breast hypersensitive. Allergy to the material can lead to the appearance of additional symptoms that mimic the defeat of the fungus (itching, swelling, hyperemia, discharge).

Different shakes affect the hormonal background of the female body very strongly:

  • frequent flights with jet lag,
  • lack of sleep and rest,
  • wrong reception ok
  • abortions,
  • stress (physical, emotional),
  • infectious diseases.

Even a trip to the resort can cause a shift in the menstrual cycle and increased PMS manifestations. If your breasts prematurely swell during the beach season and your periods begin, this game of hormones usually does not require correction.

If you had a delay, your breasts were full, nipples were sore and itchy, your lower abdomen was sick on day 19 or at short notice, and then there was scarce bloody vaginal discharge, you may still be pregnant and watch implantation bleeding.

If the lower abdomen was tight and the pain was severe, the chest ached and then ceased. Monthly:

  • started a little later
  • were more abundant than usual
  • expressed painful
  • accompanied by heaviness in the legs,
  • dizziness.

Most likely, the pregnancy was, but the embryo could not be fixed and was rejected by your body.

The breast becomes sensitive even with the development of tumors: benign and malignant. Therefore, gynecologists and mammologists insist on regular examinations. If the sensitivity of the mammary glands has increased or any additional symptoms have appeared, it is not necessary to wait for the next inspection date, it is better to visit a specialist immediately.

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Physiological factors

In the absence of infectious and inflammatory diseases of the chest, the usual nature of menstruation, mild pain in the middle part of the cycle is associated with the onset of ovulation. Approximately two weeks after the onset of the next monthly bleeding, the process of maturation of the follicles in the ovaries is completed. During this period, the egg comes out of the shell to connect with the sperm. If conception does not occur, the reverse process begins, the yellow body gradually atrophies, endometrial tissues are rejected, and menstruation occurs.

For the optimal course of the process of maturation of follicles need a stable production of sex hormones: estrogen, prolactin and FSH. Regulators dominate the first phase of the cycle, affecting the ovaries and all elements of the reproductive system. Before the onset of ovulation, the concentration of hormones reaches maximum values; under the influence of regulators, a full-fledged egg leaves the follicle membrane. Гормональный максимум приводит к небольшому набуханию груди и легкой болезненности молочных желез.In the absence of fertilization, the level of hormones decreases, the breast assumes its former size, the pain disappears. Discomfort during ovulation is not considered a dangerous phenomenon, treatment is not required.

If other signs indicating inflammation or a tumor process are added to the mild pain, you should immediately consult a doctor. Discharge from the nipple, especially with an admixture of purulent masses or blood, severe swelling of the tissues, a change in the shade of the epidermis, and an increase in temperature are symptoms of pathological changes.

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Other causes of mid-cycle breast tenderness

Not only ovulation causes a slight discomfort at 13–17 days after the onset of menstruation. It is useful for women to know which factors may provoke a slight or more pronounced tenderness of the mammary glands.

Possible causes of chest discomfort:

  • pregnancy. Slight swelling, mild tingling, weak soreness - the first signs of a successful conception. The woman still does not know that a pregnancy has come, but her breasts are already rebuilt under the influence of hormones,
  • high doses of sedatives. Violation of instructions during the reception of sedatives can affect hormones, cause discomfort in the mammary glands. Synthetic names are more likely to cause side effects than vegetable formulations,
  • congestion in the chest with excessive consumption of salt, smoked meats, carbonated drinks, alcohol, on the background of an unbalanced diet,
  • wearing a close bra. During the period of ovulation, the mammary glands swell slightly, the pressure increases, which provokes noticeable discomfort, veins show up, edemas appear. Synthetic fabric accelerates the accumulation of sweat and fatty secretions under the close bra, which increases the risk of negative processes on the skin and inside the mammary glands,
  • prolonged or acute stresses that alter the hormonal background, negatively affect the state of the breast,
  • severe obesity, significant weight gain in a short period. Unpleasant sensations in the mammary glands - a consequence of hormonal failure and metabolic disorders,
  • penetration of infection through cracks in the nipple. In the inflammatory process, the pain is pronounced not only in the middle of the cycle, but also in other periods. Often there are additional signs: swelling, discharge from the nipple, swelling, redness of the epidermis, the inflamed area is hot to the touch, in severe cases the body temperature rises,
  • the onset of menopause, including early menopause in women 30 years. The hormonal alteration of the body invokes the discomfort of various strengths in the chest,
  • bruises, injuries of the mammary glands. Hematomas, edema, seals - unpleasant consequences of falls and bruises of the chest.


Chest pain develops on the background of diseases:

  • mastopathy (nodular, fibrocystic, diffuse). Changes in the structure of glandular tissue, the appearance of zones of fibrosis, nodules, seals,
  • mastitis is an inflammatory process against the background of stagnant milk,
  • benign tumors, breast fibroadenoma,
  • cystic formations
  • breast cancer,
  • mastodynia - chest pain, often in the first phase of the cycle amid hormonal failure,
  • infectious-inflammatory process in the milk ducts and glandular tissue,
  • tumors, cysts, ovarian cancer. The defeat of the genital glands when combined with hormonal disruption is often accompanied by chest pain,
  • Mastalgiya - a strong pain in the mammary glands.

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A visit to a gynecologist is needed when developing negative signs:

  • pain and discomfort during ovulation and other phases of the menstrual cycle,
  • breast swelling over several cycles, not only before menstruation, but also in other phases,
  • changes in the state of the epidermis: cyanosis, redness, roughness, cracks, expressions,
  • the nature or frequency of menstruation changes,
  • there is pain in the abdomen,
  • seals, nodules, tumor-like structures, fused with the skin or mobile, are formed in the chest,
  • pain syndrome is formed in two mammary glands,
  • a woman is losing weight rapidly or gaining weight
  • Inexplicable irritability, nervousness, depression, aggressiveness or tearfulness, mood changes.

To eliminate chest pain, it is important to find out the cause of discomfort. If the discomfort is not related to the onset of ovulation, then you need to be examined, make an ultrasound or mammography, donate blood for hormones, find out whether there is an infectious inflammatory process or a tumor in the body.

With timely correction of hormonal background, receiving drug therapy or conducting surgery, the prognosis is favorable. For removal of tumors and cysts, it is advisable to use sparing techniques: puncture, laparoscopic and organ-sparing operations. Even in the case of a malignant process, early initiation of treatment increases the likelihood of positive dynamics of therapy.

Learn more about why the mammary glands hurt in the middle of a cycle, find out after watching the following video: