Mastitis that develops into an infected pocket of
fluid, or breast
abscess, usually needs be drained.
A small abscess can be drained with a needle,
ultrasound to guide the needle. An injection of
local anestheticmedication is used first to numb the
skin over the infected breast tissue. This procedure can be done in a doctor's
A large abscess must be cut open (lanced) to let the pus
drain out. An injection of local anesthetic medication is usually given first
to numb the breast tissue.
General anesthesia is usually not needed for this
treatment unless the abscess is deep. After the infected area has been drained,
it may be left open and packed with sterile gauze or closed with a small tube
left in so the pus can drain out. This procedure may be done in a doctor's
office or outpatient surgery setting.