What is nipple itch?

Nipple itch is a common symptom of allergies, inflammation, or even physical irritation, and is characterized by a tingling, irritating or uneasy sensation on the surface of the skin. It may occur in conditions that affect the nipple area itself or in association with more generalized conditions, such as hives or eczema.

Other common causes of nipple itch include chemical irritants, such as soap and laundry detergent, dry skin, and medication side effects. Contact dermatitis can also result in nipple itch. Depending on the cause, an itching feeling may occur in one or both nipples, and it may be accompanied by redness, pain, swelling, or discharge from the affected nipples.

Allergic reactions can lead to an itching feeling in both nipples and sometimes across the entire chest, especially if you have been exposed to poison ivy or similar plants. In rare cases, nipple itching is a symptom of breast cancer. If you have Paget’s disease of the breast, you may have nipple itch in addition to soreness, weeping and crusting. During pregnancy, nipple itch may be accompanied by swelling and discharge.

Seek immediate medical care (call 911) if you, or someone you are with, experience nipple itch along with sudden facial or throat swelling, difficulty breathing, a change in level of consciousness, or severe abdominal pain, as these may be a sign of anaphylaxis, a life-threatening allergic reaction.

If your nipple itch is persistent or causes you concern, seek prompt medical care.

SYMPTOMS

What other symptoms might occur with nipple itch?

Nipple itch may accompany other symptoms, which vary depending on the underlying disease, disorder or condition. Symptoms that frequently affect the breasts may also involve other body systems.

Breast symptoms that may occur along with nipple itch

Nipple itch may accompany other symptoms affecting the breast including:

CAUSES

What causes nipple itch?

Nipple itch is a common symptom of allergies, inflammation, or even physical irritation, which is characterized by a tingling, irritating or uneasy sensation on the surface of the skin. It may occur in conditions affecting the nipple area itself or in association with more generalized conditions, such as hives or eczema.

Other common causes of nipple itch include chemical irritant... Read more about nipple itchcauses

Medical Reviewer: Cynthia Haines, MD Last Annual Review Date: Aug 7, 2013 Copyright: © Copyright 2014 Health Grades, Inc. All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or reprinted without permission from Health Grades, Inc. Use of this information is governed by the HealthGrades User Agreement.

This Article is Filed Under: Allergies and the Immune System