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WHO Classification of Tumours
Secretory carcinoma of breast


Secretory carcinoma (SC) is a rare, low grade invasive adenocarcinoma of the breast characterized by cells that secrete large amounts of milk-like material. It is composed of cystic spaces, tubular structures, and solid areas. SCs present as mobile lumps. About 50% of cases are located near the areola. The tumour nodules are circumscribed and measure from 0.5 to 12 cm. Invasion of the adipose tissue is frequent. The centre of the lesion may contain sclerotic tissue. Necrosis is rare. Mitotic activity is low.
Secretory carcinoma occurs in children as well as in adults. It predominantly affects women, but some cases have also been reported in males. The prognosis is very favourable in children and adolescents and slightly less favourable in adults

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Tavassoli FA, Norris HJ (1980)
Secretory carcinoma of the breast.
Cancer 45: 2404-13

. The risk of nodal involvement is similar in both age groups; approximately 15% of cases develop axillary lymph node metastases. Late recurrences may occur. Fatal cases are rare
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Tavassoli FA, Devilee P (Eds.)
World Health Organization Classification of Tumours. Pathology and Genetics of Tumours of the Breast and Female Genital Organs.
3rd Edition
IARC Press: Lyon 2003