Is It Normal to Have Leaking Breast During Pregnancy?

As pregnancy progresses, many changes occur in the body. Some of these are expected or read earlier, while others take you by surprise.

Some females report that they are getting a milky discharge from their breast during pregnancy. It may be while you are working in the kitchen, sleeping or in the office. You may suddenly note that your upper clothes are wet.

It is normal to leak out milk from the breast, while you are pregnant. This may happen as early as 14 weeks of pregnancy. Some women get this and some do not. This is a normal variation in pregnancy.

Getting a Yellowish Fluid From the Nipple

The secretions which come out during the initial phases of pregnancy are actually not milk. This milk precursor is call colostrum. This fluid is a yellowish thin fluid very rich in antibodies.

It provides the baby with essential antibodies, required to fight against infections in the early days of life.

Colostrum provides the ideal nutrition to the baby, with essential proteins and energy molecules.

Colostrum may start leaking from the nipple during late pregnancy. This is due to over congested breast tissue.

Rusty Discharge From the Nipple

The breast tissue become extremely vascular and congested during later days of pregnancy. This is their preparation to serve the baby after delivery.

Slight touching or manipulating the breast may traumatize it and lead to a rusty (blood stained) discharge.

Greenish Foul Smelling Discharge

This may indicate some infection. The ductules of the breast are filled with nutrition for the baby. These are prone to getting infected.

Prompt action is required to arrest the infection and prevent its spread to lymph nodes and near by tissues.

Bloody Discharge

This may follow some trauma. The highly vascular breast tissue may get injured by slightest impact. Breaking of the fine capillaries in the breast tissue may cause a bloody discharge.

Discharge With Mass Underneath the Breast Tissue

A mass in the breast needs evaluation. Soft, fibrocystic masses are common in pregnancy. They are usually benign and regress on their own.

A hard mass, which appears to be fixed to the underlying structures may be cancerous.

There is usually a foul smelling discharge associated with breast masses.


The type of discharge and breast examination is often enough to reach a diagnosis.

Treatment is done according to the pathology of discharge.

Medical Advice (Q&As) on “Nipple Discharge During Pregnancy

  1. Eunice

    Good day! I’m currently having sore breast (two sides close to the arm of both breasts) and breast milk-like discharge from from both. I’m so afraid it might be something serious cos I’d a breast lump and it was removed when I was 18yrs old. The doctor said it was benign. Now I’m 20 and I’m getting these these symptoms with no lump. Pls is it something to worry abt? Thanks

    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      Slight soreness in the breast and discharge may be there in any ladies without pregnancy. This is usually physiological (that is, normal) and correlates with monthly hormonal secretions.

      Usually subsides on its own. However, if you palpate any lump there or if the discharge stays or increases, it’s better to get yourself examined.

  2. Eunice

    Its been a week now I’ve been having this symptoms and this is the first time I’m seeing discharge that looks like breast milk though it only comes out when I squeeze the nipples. I think I’d better get examined to be sure of things. Thanks for your reply.

  3. Diksha

    Hi.. I m 24 weeks pregnant . Earlier I was having yellowish discharge from my left nipple regularly but now I m having bloody discharge from last 2 days from my left breast nipple.. I m really worried and the bloody discharge is like big drops… What should I do.

    1. Buddy M.D. Post author

      Don’t worry. This happens sometimes in many women, as the breast tissue becomes more vascular during this phase.

      However, if this continues, get it checked up by your doctor in the next visit.


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