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Phyllodes breast tumour

(5 Posts)
Rose100 Fri 26-Sep-08 10:16:44

I had a benign phyllodes tumour 8 years ago, which apparantely is a very rare form of tumour but can recur and even turn malignant. I was told at the time it was a fibroadenoma, but recently saw my medical notes and learnt that this was not the case. Has anyone else had one of these and do you go for regualar check ups?

shoedweller Fri 26-Sep-08 10:25:23

Phyllodes tumours are not all the same but form a spectrum from benign to malignant. The most common problem is recurrence needing another op rather than malignancy speading round the body. When they removed it it would have been sent to pathology and the pathologist will have said in their report whether it is a basically benign or more malignant looking and whether it is completely excised or not. The completeness of excision is the best indicator of recurrence. Your surgeon or your GP should be able to tell you what the pathologist said. You should keep an eye out to check for a recurrent lump where the old one was. (I'm a pathologist)

Rose100 Fri 26-Sep-08 12:35:52

Thank you shoedweller. I have read something similar on the Internet, and was a bit confused about how a tumour can be said to be malignant if it does not spread. As a pathologist, what indicates that a tumour is benign- is it something to do with the shape/structure of the cells?

shoedweller Fri 26-Sep-08 13:01:15

It depends on the tumour. It is often not helpful to think of tumours as either benign or malignant as there is often a spectrum. We look down the microscope and try and find features that might indicate how it will behave. The other docs then follow up a load of patients and see how the tumours actually behave. The research will show that a proportion of each tumour type will go on to be malignant. In that way you can kind of categorise them but it's not a crystal ball.

In the case of Phyllodes we look at how many of the cells are in mitosis ( ie replicating). We count them and classify them that way.

Hope that helps.

Just to emphasise though - the most important thing is that it is out with 1cm margins.

Rose100 Fri 26-Sep-08 13:12:49

Thank you. I don't know about my margins but may arrange for a check up.

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