To give you the best overview I have decided to cover the most worrisome and most common causes first, to be followed by some of the other origins of an itchy nipple.
Paget’s Disease Paget’s Disease (PD) is a rare form of breast cancer that can involve both the nipple and the aerola (colored area that encircles the raised nipple).
While it’s the common cause of nipple symptoms, it is the most worrisome. An itching or burning sensation of the nipple or aerola is a common initial symptom; it is often accompanied by a crusted appearance.
Nip Stick®, designed for joggers’ nipples, contains shea butter, jojoba oil, and beeswax.
Another reader successfully used Kiss My Face Lip Balm® containing canola oil, beeswax, lecithin, coconut oil, and other emollients on her itchy nipples.
The majority of AD remedies are topical treatments.
One might be prescribed a steroid cream or ointment.
Those who just had Paget’s of the nipple (not invasive breast cancer) were selected for the cone-shaped excision.
Those select patients with the breast conserving surgery had survival rates similar to those who were treated with mastectomy. That would be Atopic Dermatitis (AD), also known as eczema.
Atopic Dermatitis can appear in persons of all ages.
Since AD is thought to be due to a hypersensitivity reaction, persons may be more prone to develop AD if there is a personal or family history of allergies (e.g., asthma, hay fever).
Treatment for Paget’s disease is breast surgery, either mastectomy or a cone-shaped excision of the nipple.
One study from Sweden followed women for 12 years to see if mastectomy was necessary for all women with PD.
Avoiding known triggers is foremost, but keeping natural moisture in the skin is an important goal.