Breast abscess linked to smoking and nipple piercing
Smoking increases the risk of breast abscesses, painful inflammatory lesions that are difficult to treat and tend to recur at rates as high as 40 to 50 percent.
Nipple piercing is a risk factor for breast abscesses, and may lead to development of abscesses even up to seven years after the piercing. Other major risk factors for the condition include obesity and diabetes.
Researchers studied 68 breast abscess American patients, including 43 who were smokers and nine who had had a nipple piercing, to find out the risk factors that predispose to the development of primary breast abscesses and subsequent recurrence. None of the women had a history of breast cancer, breast radiation therapy or breast surgery within the previous 12 months.
Compared with nonsmokers, it was found that smokers were six times more likely to develop breast abscesses. And the condition was 15 times more likely to recur in smokers than nonsmokers. Nearly 60 percent of patients with a recurrence of breast abscess were heavy smokers.
The study shows that smoking is linked with both causing a breast abscess and its recurrence, and nipple piercing is also associated with a higher risk of developing a breast abscess.
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