Fibrodenoma are benign lumps that have low malignant potential (3%), are generally discreet and very mobile.
Most young women between the age of 15 to 25 years who present with a breast lump have a Fibroadenoma.
This is the age when the hormonal activity in women is at its peak and these lumps are suspected to be nothing more than an aberration associated with the normal development of the breast.
The lump is discreet and very mobile, so much so that it is sometimes called the ‘mouse of the breast.’
About 10% of fibroadenomas are multiple and 10% can disappear spontaneously each year. They seldom grow beyond 2 to 4 cms in size.
Malignant potential of Fibroadenoma is about 3 %. Fibroadenomas are benign tumors composed of stromal and epithelial elements; some variants have a higher risk of cancer than others.
- Sometimes the fibroadenoma in adolescents can grow rapidly and are called giant fibroadenomas or ‘Phylloides tumour’ and does have higher malignant potential.
- If a fibroadenoma is associated with cystic changes or has calcifications or sclerosis they have a higher malignant potential.
- Interestingly, woman who have had fibroadenoma excised are twice as likely to have carcinoma in comparison to the normal population and are candidates for breast cancer screening later in life.