Discharges and secretions of the nipple

A. Marilyn Leitch, Raheela Ashfaq

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Nipple discharge is a common breast symptom that warrants evaluation. Although most discharges are due to benign conditions, discharge may be due to an underlying malignancy. This chapter reviews the potential etiologies of nipple discharge and the appropriate workup, including the role of ductography, ductoscopy, and magnetic resonance imaging. Algorithms for workup and management of nipple discharge are presented. The technique of duct excision is outlined. This chapter also examines the significance of nipple secretions with respect to breast cancer risk and the technology for obtaining nipple secretions for cytologic examination for risk assessment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Breast
Subtitle of host publicationComprehensive Management of Benign and Malignant Diseases
PublisherElsevier Inc.
ISBN (Print)9780323359559
Publication statusPublished - Aug 24 2017



  • Ductography
  • Ductoscopy
  • Fluid papilloma
  • Nipple aspiration
  • Nipple discharge

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Leitch, A. M., & Ashfaq, R. (2017). Discharges and secretions of the nipple. In The Breast: Comprehensive Management of Benign and Malignant Diseases (pp. 57-78.e3). Elsevier Inc.. https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-323-35955-9.00004-0