Fibroadenolipoma is a name frequently used to describe a breast hamartoma. Sometimes called a ‘breast within a breast‘, it is a benign proliferation of glandular, fibrous, and fat tissues, encapsulated in a thin layer of connective tissue.
It is a breast lesion or tumor (oma) which might show on imaging studies, or in some cases it might even form a palpable lump. However, it is not malignant. It is made of cells normally found in the area, but growing in a disorganized way, and at the same rate as surrounding cells.
A fibroadenolipoma will be asymptomatic and painless, and will probably not even be discovered unless imaging studies are done for some other reason. Hamartomas can occur many places in the body. But, since it has a somewhat ambiguous appearance it will likely be followed-up with detailed imaging and histological evaluations to make sure it is not breast cancer. Breast fibroadenolipomas are fairly uncommon, and not always mentioned on radiology reports.
Fibroadenolipomas require careful followup
There is very remote possibility that breast carcinoma could be growing undetected and coincidentally within the epithelial cells of the fibroadenolipoma, and so the follow-up biopsies and correlated imaging studies tend to be rather thorough. Breast fibroadenolipomas are generally left alone because they usually cause no symptoms, but in rare cases when they grow large enough to change the shape of a breast, they can be surgically removed.
Risk of Adenomyosis of the Uterus may be increased in breast cancer patients
Adenomyosis is a rare disorder in which the endometrium (lining of the uterus) grows inside the muscle walls of the uterus, which is a somewhat similar condition to a fibroadenolipoma of the breast. The condition is basically harmless but can be quite painful. Some studies have shown that postmenopausal breast cancer patients who are receiving tamoxifen therapy might be somewhat more prone to developing adenomyosis of the uterus. It is speculated that prolonged ‘estrogen-like’ stimulation by tamoxifen can actually play a causal role in developing adenomyosis. In one study, the rate of breast cancer patients receiving tamoxifen treatment who subsequently developed a uterine adenomyosis was over 50%. ‘Chemokines’ ( proteins responsible for chemotaxis) present in the breast lesion seem to be drawn to polypoid lesions of uterus. So, if the breast tumor shows high levels of these chemokines, the cancer pathologist might have some idea where to look to check for possible metastasis of the breast carcinoma.
The last paragraph about chemokines, is too old. Just forget about it.
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