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Year : 2011  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 20-23

Tuberculous mastitis: Not an infrequent malady

1 Department of Pathology, Navodaya Medical College, Raichur, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Pathology,Santiram Medical College, Nandyal, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India

Correspondence Address:
Sagar C Mhetre
Department of Pathology, Navodya Medical College, Mantralayam Road, Raichur - 584103, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0331-3131.84224

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Background and Objectives : Tuberculosis of the breast, surprisingly, is not an infrequent malady as presumed in this highly overcrowded country, India, and therefore, curiosity arose to investigate these cases in further detail. Materials and Methods : The patients' records were obtained from the Surgical Pathology Section of the Department of Pathology, Santhiram Medical College, Nandyal, Dist., Kurnool (AP), India, from 2005 to 2010. The pathological material and clinical history from all histopathologically diagnosed cases of breast tuberculosis were then re-examined independently by us. Ziehl Neelson staining was done to demonstrate mycobacterium tuberculous bacilli. Results : Eleven cases of tuberculosis of the breast encountered over a five-year period, accounted for 4.1% of all breast lesions. All patients were females. Most of the patients (63.6%) were in the 26 to 35 years age group. Five cases (45.4%) were lactating at the time of presentation. Only two cases were diagnosed as tuberculous mastitis on the basis of a breast lump, with chronic discharging sinuses. In two cases, the breast lump simulated carcinoma. Conclusion : Tuberculous mastitis occurs more frequently than is supposed. The predisposing factors for its development are reproductive age group and lactation. As this lesion can mimic carcinoma breast, all breast lumps must be diagnosed histopathologically before radical treatment is undertaken, to avoid needless mastectomies.

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