Breast abscesses

Ioannides C

Ιaso hospital, Athens, Greece

Correspondence: Ioannides Charis, 18 Ioannou Gennadiou St, GR-11521, Athens, Greece. E-mail:


Breast abscesses are classified into lactational-related and those which are not associated with lactation. They are infrequent, however, they can cause considerable morbidity. The diagnosis is mainly clinical. They are treated with ultrasound assisted aspiration or, occassionally, with incision and drainage. If there is suspicion of malignancy, an incisional biopsy of the abscess wall is absolutely indicated. Excision of the, possibly, necrotic overlying skin is not indicated. In numerous cases a fistula develops, either spontaneously or after incision and drainage of the non lactational abscess. The fistula is treated by fistulectomy and excision of the affected duct (a total ductal excision is usually required). Simultaneous mobilisation and redistribution of the surrounding breast tissue leads to reconstruction of the defect, restoration of the normal contour of the breast and a satisfying esthetic result.

Keywords: breast abscesses, treatment

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