Breast Pain

Require referral

  • Breast pain with a significant family history of breast or ovarian cancer
  • Or with any other breast symptom (lump, discharge, unilateral eczema, recently acquired nipple distortion or retraction)
  • Or persistent pain that does not respond to simple analgesics and a well-fitting bra.


Do not usually require referral on first presentation

  • Breast pain is the only symptom present and no significant family history.

Persistent breast pain despite adequate treatment should be referred

Breast pain in young women associated with menstrual abnormality is likely to be a symptom of hormonal changes. The gynaecological problem should be addressed first.


All patients referred with breast symptoms are seen within 2 weeks (and often within 1 week)