Breast Tuberculosis: A Rare Cause of Breast Masses
Background: Breast tuberculosis (TB) is a rare form of tuberculosis. Incidence of the disease is less than 0.1% of all breast lesions in western countries and 4% in TB endemic countries. In Turkey, TB is an endemic disease but breast tuberculosis is very rarely reported. With this report, we aimed to review 11 cases of breast TB retrospectively.
Methods: The records of 11 patients were evaluated retrospectively. Histopathological examination, Erlich-Ziehl-Nielsen stain, tuberculosis culture and PCR were performed to confirm the diagnosis.
Results: The mean age of the patients was 37.8. The mean symptom duration was 15.5 months. All of the patients had received non-specific antibiotic regimens during this prolonged symptom period. The most common signs were painful breast mass with discharge through the fistula, palpable lymph nodes in the ipsilateral axilla and skin retraction (Figure 1). The diagnosis was confirmed by histopathological examination in all the patients. Acid-fast bacilli was achieved in 1/10 and culture positivity in 3/10 and PCR positivity in 2/10 of cases. The most common radiological findings were breast abscesses and axillary lymph nodes. All of the patients were treated with anti-tuberculous therapy with or without surgical drainage.
Conclusion: Mycobacteria should be kept in mind for differential diagnosis in patients who have no response to standard antibiotic therapy with chronic breast or soft tissue infections including recurrent breast abscess. The main striking symptoms of breast tuberculosis are painful breast mass, discharge through the fistula, and prolonged symptom duration over one year.
Figure 1. Breast mass with discharge through the fistula and and skin retraction of a patient.
K. Kart Yasar,
R. Yilmaz, None
A. Kehribar, None
M. Simsek, None
N. Cabioglu, None
B. Durdu, None
B. Durmaz Cetin, None