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Shooting Pain in Breast Causes, Sharp, that come and go, Breastfeeding, Pregnancy, and Armpit, How to Get Rid


It is alarming to have shooting pain in breast. What does this pain mean? The cause of the pain ranges from minor condition to life threatening condition such as heart attack. Get insight about the causes of sharp pain in breast, armpit and various ways on how to get rid of the pain.

Shooting Pain in Breast – Overview

sharp pain in breast

shooting pain in breast

However, shooting sharp pain in the breast could be due to heartburn, stress, gastritis, or even too much gas. Pain in the breast could also be due to gastritis which can be dull, throbbing pain that feels like something is gnawing at you.

You may also experience other symptoms like chest pain that causes a lot of discomfort. You may also experience certain squeezing pain in the left side breast and chest that are related to heart. This type of pain should never be ignored.

Getting rid of this type of pain requires addressing the underlying issues in the body. You may be expected to take some of the natural remedies or visit medical professionals for diagnosis and proper treatment.

Shooting Pain in Breast Causes

Here are 10 potential causes of shooting pain in breast and the causes are either medical conditions or non-medical conditions. They include:

  1. Gallbladder infection or gallstones

You are likely to experience sharp shooting pain in the breast in case an infection causes blockage of the gallbladder. The pain and other symptoms can last for several hours depending on the severity of the infection.

According to medical research, gallbladder is located just below the chest right breast and it plays a vital role of producing bile juice that helps during digestion. The formation of gallstones causes blockage in the bile duct of your liver and it may result in inflammation and pain in the breast.

According to doctors from WebMD, the pain from the gallbladder starts immediately just below the ribcage. The stabbing pain spread to the chest and even the shoulder blade. Other symptoms that you are likely to experience are nausea and vomiting. Also, sharp pain in the upper abdomen and mild aches in the chest.

It is recommended to avoid eating fatty foods in order to reduce the chances of getting gallstones. Also, you are expected to drink plenty of lemon juice in order to help in dissolving the gallstones and even prevent the constant stabbing pain.

The presence of citric acid in the lemon helps in dissolving the gallstones and flush out ant toxic substances from the liver. Squeeze juice from 1/2 lemon into a glass of warm water. Drink one glass of lemon water first thing in the morning and one in the evening.

  1. Pancreatitis

You are likely to experience a stabbing pain in the breast due to the inflammation of the pancreases. Blockage of the pancreas duct due to overuse of alcohol, gallstones, or certain medications can result in pancreas inflammation.

According to, the most common symptom of pancreas inflammation is the sharp shooting pain in the breast and upper abdomen. The pain can occur on either sides of the breast and the pain can spread to the chest, back, or lower abdomen.

The pain under the breast can become worse after eating. Contact your medical provider in case you experience severe pain in the abdomen and the breast for diagnosis and treatment.

  1. Kidney stones

The presence of kidney stones in the kidneys can result in stabbing pain in the breast of the either sides. This type of pain will come and go. You may also experience abdominal discomforts that come in waves, intense pain and then mild aches.

Kidney stones develop due to buildup of minerals and salts. The buildup especially on both the two kidneys can result in severe pain in the lower chest and even in the breast.

According to doctors on WebMD, kidney stones not only cause pain in the breast but also in the groin, or genitals when they move down the urinary tract. You may experience urine with some bloods and certain particles during urination.

Drink plenty of water to help flush out the toxic substance that result in the formation of kidney stones. You can either opt to use natural remedies like vinegar or visit a professional medical doctor for treatment.

  1. Too much gas

Trapped gas in the intestines can result in a stabbing pain in the breast or chest depending on the location of the trapped gas. Doctors from the Mayo Clinic report that gas can cause abdominal cramping and sharp, jabbing pains.

It is easier to differentiate between the abdominal pains caused by gas and other serious conditions since chest pains go away on its own without treatment.

Reduce amount of cholesterol intake and maintain a healthy digestive system in order to prevent the chances of getting throbbing breast pain.

  1. Heartburn

You may also experience pain in the breast and chest immediately after eating due to heartburn. The stomach acid the escape through the windpipe can cause the pain and irritation of the windpipe lining.

According to Dr. David T. Derrer on WebMD, heartburn causes a sharp, burning pain just under your ribs or anywhere along the digestive tract of a person. You may experience difficulty in swallowing and even feel something stuck in the throat.

According to Dr. Derrer, it can be very tricky to differentiate heartburn from heart attack. However, heartburn pain doesn’t usually radiate to your arm or shoulders and is quickly treated with antacids.

  1. Stress

You can develop pain in the breast especially if you have a lot of emotional or psychological stress. According to expert reports, stress can affect your digestive system; increase your heart rate, and cause muscles and nerves to tense up. Stress also causes abdominal pain because of how it affects your nervous system.

According to the Harvard Medical School published information on the connection between stress and abdominal pain. The researchers found that even mild stress can disrupt the digestive system resulting in increased pain in your abdominal region.

  1. Anxiety attack

You can develop pain or discomfort in your chest under your breast when suffering from anxiety attack. It can cause a lot of concern in case it is the first time you are experiencing such.

According to Dr. Joseph Goldberg on WebMD, panic attacks can cause heart palpitations, a feeling of choking, uncontrollable shivering, and chest pain or discomfort since it triggers the nerves and muscles to tighten causing painful spasms.

  1. Pleurisy

This is a condition that results in the inflammation of the lining of the lungs. You will experience severe pains, and sharp stabbing pain in the breast. If the pleura become infected by a fungal or bacterial infection it becomes inflamed, resulting in intense chest pain.

The condition may also be accompanied by cough, sneeze, or breathe deeply that result in painful chest and breast conditions. Consult your medical provider for treatment and examination.

  1. Shingles

Shingles are marked by appearance of stabbing pain in the chest and blotchy rashes. This is a condition that is caused by viral infection on the nerve endings in the body.


According to Dr. Mary Harding on, the stabbing pain in the chest occurs when the nerve endings are infected. The painful rash usually blisters and then forms scabs around the affected skin area.

  1. Breast cancer

It is important to note that the presence of pain in the breast should not worry you about the breast cancer. In case there is formation of lumps in the breast could be a sign of breast cancer. According to breast cancer foundation in London, there is no connection between breast pain and breast cancer.

In a very rare circumstance, stabbing pain in the breast can be a symptom of breast cancer. According to the report from Cancer Research UK states that advanced breast cancer has many other serious symptoms like coughing up blood, frequent chest and lung infections, and/or breathlessness.

  1. Other minor causes of stabbing breast pain include:
  • Muscle strain
  • Rib injury

Sharp Pain in Left Breast and Armpit

shooting pain in breast

sharp pain in breast

The pain in the left breast and armpit could be due to the following factors:

  1. Excess gas

The accumulation of excess gas in the chest could be the common cause of stabbing pain in the breast and the shoulder blade. When the excess gas get trapped in the stomach, you are likely to feel a certain ache under your left breast.

According to the research done by Dr. Matthew Hoffman on WebMD, you may also experience blotting and pain in the abdomen due to trapped gas in the stomach. Fortunately, the pain in the chest due to trapped gas goes away after some time.

  1. Heartburn

This is a digestive problem that results in the discomfort and pain under your left breast. The condition occur when the stomach acid escape through esophagus and in the process result in a burning sensation in your chest after eating which can often be felt under your breast.

According to Dr. David T. Derrer on WebMD, heartburn is marked by many symptoms such as severe pain in your chest, breast and even below the ribcage. It is recommended to consult your doctor since it is difficult to differentiate between heartburn and heart attack.

  1. Heart problems

Having a intense stabbing pain in your left breast could be a sign of a serious heart problem. Cardiovascular diseases can affect the heart and result in narrowed or blocked arteries. This occurs when the amount of blood supplied to the heart reduces or stop altogether.

According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, you are likely to experience chest pain that is intense and come and go after some time. Consult your medical provider for diagnosis and treatment.

  1. Pericarditis

This is a heart related condition that causes dull aching chest pains and discomfort in your left upper abdomen. It occurs due to bacterial infection that causes the sac to become inflamed, resulting in pain on the left side of your chest.

According to doctors from the National Health Service, the heart problem can result in sudden, sharp pains behind their breastbone. The pain often spreads to your left shoulder and neck and is worse when coughing or sneezing.

  1. Hiatal hernia

The condition results in severe pains on the left side of the chest of the left breast. Your hiatus is located in your chest just behind your left breast. Its function is to stop food going back up your esophagus.

Also, according to The British Hernia Centre, the heart related problem can result in pain that is so severe that many people think they are having a heart attack. Have a positive and healthy lifestyle to reduce the chance of developing the condition.

  1. Gastritis

This condition gas the ability of causing discomfort and pain under your left breast. Inflammation and irritation of your stomach lining can be caused by Helicobacter pylori bacteria or infections.

This can result in nausea feeling after eating, have chronic stomach upset, suffer from indigestion, and have a gnawing feeling in your stomach.

According to Dr. Jennifer Robinson on WebMD, gastritis can also cause abdominal pain, bloating as well as severe stomach infections that can cause vomiting blood or black tarry stools. You can use Manuka honey to help get rid of the condition.

  1. Stress

Being stressed out could be a contributing factor to pains under your left breast. Actually, stress can cause pains anywhere under your ribs and be the cause of many other health issues. Therefore, healthy lifestyle free from stress is recommended to curb the problem in the breast and armpit.

  1. Panic attack

This can result in pain in your chest, and because they are often felt on the left side of the chest, many people mistake them for a heart attack or angina.

The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry reported that many people who attend the emergency department at the hospital with chest pains are actually having a panic attack. Fortunately the condition is treatable by either use of natural remedies and medical treatments.

  1. Pleurisy

Many people who have pleurisy complain of severe pain in their ribs under their left breast. Pleurisy is inflammation of the lining surrounding the lungs and can be caused by an infection or lung disease.

According to doctors from WebMD, pleurisy causes sharp, sudden chest pains when you cough, sneeze or move. Usually, pleurisy only affects one side of the chest.

If the lower part of your left lung is affected by inflammation, then you will experience severe, fleeting pains under your left breast and upper abdomen.

  1. Pneumonia

Pneumonia in your left lung can result in pains in the chest under your left breast. Pneumonia occurs due to viral or bacterial infections in your respiratory tract and is sometimes a complication of the flu or other serious illness.

Dr. Denis Hadjiliadis, who is Associate Professor of Medicine, Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care at Perelman School of Medicine, says that among the various symptoms of pneumonia are sharp or stabbing chest pains.

Dr. Hadjiliadis warns that pneumonia can become a life-threatening condition. You should visit your doctor if your chest pains get worse, you have a persistent fever, or you start coughing up blood.

  1. Injury

Any form of injury to your ribs, nerves, or muscles on the left side of your chest or the muscles connecting your ribs can cause mild to severe pains under your left breast.

According to Doctors on WebMD, if a chest injury has caused pain, you should visit your doctor. This is to rule out the possibility that the pain isn’t the result of a fractured rib, damage to your heart muscles, liver, or spleen.

  1. Breast cancer

Many women are concerned that pain under a breast could be a sign of breast cancer. However, according to Cancer Research UK, 90% of breast lumps are not cancerous and breast pain isn’t usually associated with breast cancer.

On rare instances, pain under your left or right breast is a sign of advanced breast cancer that has spread to the lungs. However, pain under your breast isn’t a sign in itself that breast cancer has spread, as you will have other, more serious symptoms. Cancer Research UK says that these symptoms are coughing up blood, pleurisy, constant chest infections, or breathlessness.

Sharp Pain in Breast that come and go

This type of pain in the breast is due to your menstrual cycle. It does come and go during the changes in the hormonal level in that time of the month.

You may feel a dull, heavy, and aching in both breasts and is diffuse, located throughout the breast. Cyclic breast pain often extends into your armpit areas.

This type of pain is quite common among women during menstrual cycle and premenopausal period. However, they are harmless and can be relieve by use of painkillers. In case it becomes intense, consult your medical provider for treatment.

Pain in one Breast

This is a type of pain under the breast that is not related with your menstrual cycle and may be noncyclical breast pain. This pain can occur beneath, inside and around the breast.

Some of the other causes of pain in one breast may include the following factors:

  1. Breast Injury

The skin around the breast is said to be sensitive, elastic skin that protects nerves, blood vessels, and connective tissues as well as ducts and lobes for producing breast milk. When the condition is exposed to injuries, you are likely to experience pain under the breast.

  1. Breast Surgery

This can result in development of scars that hurts during the healing process after undergoing incisions or reconstruction. The pain can come and go even long after your surgery.

  1. Milk Duct Conditions and Infections

Infection of the breast may result in abscess around the nipple and this can trigger in mastitis (a breast infection) or ductal ectasia. Consult your medical provider for diagnosis and treatment.

  1. Some other causes of pain in the breast

They include:

  • Shingles
  • Esophageal Causes
  • Heart Attack
  • Airway Causes
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Muscle Spasm
  • Chest Wall Injury
  • Costochondritis
  • Inflammation and Lumps

Is Sharp Pain in Breast a Pregnancy Symptom?

Having sharp pains in the breast during pregnancy is normal and very common. These pains are said to be normal since during the pregnancy period, you are likely to experience growing and changing breast size.

These pains are attributed to the following:

  • Breasts expanding
  • Breasts filling
  • Milk ducts expanding

These pains have no cause and are considered to be a natural occurrence. During this period, women are advised to stop consuming caffeine and drink more milk. The pain disappears after the recommendation according to many women.

In case of lumps in the breast, you should seek medical attention from a medical provider for diagnosis and treatment. In case of breast cancer, it should be treated at early stages to avoid further complications.

How to Get Rid of a Shooting Pain in Breast

Some of the common home remedies for stabbing pain in the breast include the following:

  1. Fennel Tea

It has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties that help to provide relief from painful breasts. It also has the ability of reducing inflammation and also enhances better enzymes circulation. It plays other vital roles like promoting digestion and reduction of stomach aches.

How to use

  • Take one cup of water and add 1 tablespoon of fennel seeds.
  • Bring it to boil and let ir steep for 15 minutes.
  • Strain it over a cup and add 1 teaspoon of honey.
  • Stir well and drink this herbal tea.
  • Start drinking fennel tea 2-3 days before expected date of periods
  1. Warm Compress

It helps to soothe the breast muscles. It can be applied over painful and sore breast to soothe inflammation and reduce burning sensation.

How to use

  • Take one cup of warm water.
  • Soak a hand towel and squeeze out extra water.
  • Cover the affected area with warm cloth.
  • Keep it until warmness resides.
  • Do it again back to back 3 times.
  • Repeat this remedy 3 times a day to get rid of tenderness and soreness.


  1. Pain Under Right Breast: Causes, Treatments, and When to See a Doctor:
  2. Pain Under Left Breast: Causes, Treatments, and When to See a Doctor:
  3. Why Do I Have a Pain in My Breast?
  4. What Causes Breast Pain?

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