Atypical Hyperplasia of the Breast Treatment

What is atypical hyperplasia of the breast treatment?

Atypical hyperplasia can occur in various parts of the body and it usually indicates the presence of abnormal tissue. So, what is atypical hyperplasia of the breast treatment? First, let's understand hyperplasia.

The term hyperplasia refers to cell growth which is more rapid that normal. When atypical hyperplasia of the breast occurs, therefore, it relates to fast growing cells being present in the breast tissue.

Atypical hyperplasia of the breast generally refers to the growth of epithelial cells in the lining of the breast ducts. However, atypical hyperplasia of the breast can also occur in the lobular cells. Although this is normally referred to as atypical lobular hyperplasia, the terms may sometimes be used interchangeably.

Whilst atypical hyperplasia of the breast is not cancer, it may be indicative of potentially cancerous cells occurring. Known as a proliferative breast lesion, atypical hyperplasia of the breast may present similarly to early stage breast cancer.

However, atypical hyperplasia of the breast normally only has some similarities to a low-grade ductal carcinoma in situ and does not meet the diagnostic criteria of a carcinoma.

How is atypical hyperplasia of the breast diagnosed?

Normally, three main factors are considered when making a diagnosis of atypical hyperplasia of the breast.

Firstly, physicians will consider the architectural pattern of the lesion. In most cases, atypical hyperplasia of the breast presents as a group of round or cuboidal hyperchromatic cells. Physicians will then analyze the extent of the disease and cytology. If cells are in a regular pattern and cell nuclei is uniformed, atypical hyperplasia of the breast is likely.

Although the presence of atypical hyperplasia of the breast may increase the risk of breast cancer, this can be said of any abnormal cell growth in the breast tissue. Whilst patients with atypical hyperplasia of the breast may be monitored for potential cancerous tissue, the condition does not mean that cancer will occur.

What atypical hyperplasia of the breast treatment is available?

Rather than leaving the tissue alone, atypical hyperplasia of the breast treatment is normally preferred. In order to confirm the diagnosis and begin atypical hyperplasia of the breast treatment, physicians will normally perform a biopsy.

This involves using a needle to extract the abnormal cells. If all the abnormal cells can be removed via a needle biopsy, there may be no need for further atypical hyperplasia of the breast treatment

However, tests may be carried out on the biopsied tissue. Pathologists can then confirm that atypical hyperplasia of the breast is the cause of the abnormal cell growth and that cancer is not present.

Following this core biopsy, an additional excisional biopsy may be carried out. This will enable pathologists to examine tissue around the atypical hyperplasia and determine whether or not any other abnormalities are present.

Although atypical hyperplasia of the breast is not cancer, a familial history of breast cancer may result in further treatment being offered. Medications, such as tamoxifen, are often given to breast cancer patients if their tumors are believed to be hormone sensitive.

If patients with atypical hyperplasia of the breast also have a family history of breast cancer, it may be offered in order to reduce the risk of cancer occurring. However, this treatment is not compulsory and patients must decide whether the benefits of medication outweigh the potential side effects which might occur.

Are there complications of atypical hyperplasia of the breast?

Due to the risks associated with atypical hyperplasia of the breast, patients may undergo regular screening following a successful needle biopsy. Although all women should have access to regular screening, patients with a history of atypical; hyperplasia of the breast may have screenings at more regular intervals.

Similarly, patients are advised to examine themselves regularly and report any changes or lumps which may occur in the breast tissue. In some cases, it may be appropriate for magnetic resonance imaging to be used in order to examine the breast tissue fully. Whilst most patients won’t require an MRI, the presence of additional breast cancer risk factors may render this additional testing beneficial.

Generally, there are no symptoms associated with atypical hyperplasia of the breast and patients may not realize they have it until it is diagnosed following routine screening. Whilst it may increase the risk of cancer occurring, atypical hyperplasia of the breast treatment is usually effective in removing the abnormal cells. This, in conjunction with close monitoring and follow up treatment, can reduce the risk of cancer occurring and allow for early detection if the disease does develop.

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Last Reviewed:
August 31, 2017
Last Updated:
October 26, 2017
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