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J R Soc Med. 1986 December; 79(12): 715–716.
PMCID: PMC1290571

Symptomatic and incidental mammary duct ectasia.


The histology obtained from 1256 female patients undergoing breast surgery was reviewed. Mammary duct ectasia was noted in 51 (4.2%) patients who had associated symptoms and in 103 (8.1%) patients where duct ectasia was recognized as an incidental finding. The syndrome is defined by primary (nipple change or sepsis) and secondary (pain and lump) symptoms. Formal duct excision gives good results for symptomatic duct ectasia. It is postulated that many women have nonsymptomatic mammary duct ectasia. Secondary infection gives rise to nipple change, lump and pain. In the severe form abscess and fistula formation occurs which necessitates repeated surgical treatment, and rarely mastectomy.

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Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
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  • Preece PE, Mansel RE, Bolton PM, Hughes LM, Baum M, Gravelle IH. Clinical syndromes of mastalgia. Lancet. 1976 Sep 25;2(7987):670–673. [PubMed]
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