Inflammatory breast carcinoma

Case contributed by Garth Kruger


An elderly female patient complains of an enlarging swollen left breast for 2 months.

Patient Data

Age: 80 years
Gender: Female

The elderly patient was in an old age home and complained of a swollen enlarging left breast. A physician diagnosed an infection and put the patient on antibiotics. Poor clinical response. Normal WBC count. After a month the breast was larger and the skin edematous.

There is a diffuse increased density to the whole left breast with very significant skin thickening. Look at the two CC views especially.


Ultrasound of the left breast shows very edematous thickened skin but no discrete tumor.

Case Discussion

The age of the patient, the clinical history together with the mammographic appearance will already clue you in to the possible diagnosis.

In radiology practice there are likely only infection and inflammatory carcinoma that will give these imaging findings.

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