The association of tuberculosis and cancer has been recorded in most of the organs and has been described and explained by many authors in many diverse ways. Kaplan et al. (1974) reviewed 58,245 patients with cancer and identified 201 cases of coexisting tuberculosis [5
]. Highest prevalence was seen in patients with Hodgkin's disease (96/10,000 cases) followed by lung cancer (92/10,000), lymphosarcoma (88/10,000) and reticulum cell sarcoma (78/10,000) [5
]. Among 14,742 cases of breast reviewed by them, only 28 had coexisting tuberculosis in breast, a prevalence of 19/10,000. No case of axillary nodal coexistence was identified in their series [5
Bayle first described the association of tuberculosis and carcinoma in 1810. He described "cavitation cancereuse" as one of the six types of tuberculosis, which appears to be the first published description of coexistence of the two [6
]. The coexistence of breast cancer and tuberculosis has been described in over 100 cases [7
], however its coexistence in the axillary node is rare. Only seven cases have been reported in the literature so far [2
]. Majority of these cases reported breast cancer with axillary node showing tubercular foci, while our patient had a metastatic carcinoma and tubercular granulomatous foci in the same lymph node in the same high power field (figure ) with the absence of tubercular foci elsewhere. The case is being reported for its rarity.