Non-Cancerous Breast Conditions

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Other non-cancerous breast conditions

Some other types of less common, benign or non-cancerous tumors and conditions can also be found in the breast.

Radial scars

Radial scars, also called complex sclerosing lesions, are often found when a breast biopsy (breast tissue is removed and checked under a microscope) is done for some other purpose. Radial scars may distort the normal breast tissue.

Radial scars are not really scars, but are called such because they look like scars when seen under a microscope.

Radial scars do not usually cause symptoms, but they are important for 2 reasons. First, if they are large enough, they may look like cancer on a mammogram, or even on a biopsy. Second, they are linked to a slight increase in the woman’s risk of developing breast cancer.

Women who have them may be advised to see the doctor more often than usual. Many doctors recommend removing radial scars.

Other benign lumps or tumors

Lipomas (lie-po-muhs or lip-oh-muhs) are benign fatty tumors that can appear almost anywhere in the body, including the breast. They are usually not tender.

Other benign lumps or tumors that are sometimes found in the breast include hamartomas (ham-ar-TOE-muhs), hemangiomas (he-man-jee-OH-muhs), hematomas (he-muh-TOE-muhs), adenomyoeptheliomas (ad-uh-no-my-oh-ep-ith-ee-lee-OH-muhs), and neurofibromas (nur-oh-fie-BRO-muhs).

None of these conditions raises breast cancer risk, but they may need to be biopsied or removed to know what they are.


Last Medical Review: 01/14/2014
Last Revised: 01/14/2014