Phyllodes Tumor (Cystosarcoma Phyllodes) Clinical Presentation

Updated: Jul 20, 2021
  • Author: Donald R Lannin, MD; Chief Editor: John Geibel, MD, MSc, DSc, AGAF  more...
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Phyllodes tumors generally manifest as larger masses and display rapid growth. A small mass may rapidly increase in size in the few weeks before the patient seeks medical attention. Tumors rarely involve the nipple-areola complex or ulcerate to the skin. Patients with metastases may present with such symptoms as dyspnea, fatigue, and bone pain.


Physical Examination

A firm, mobile, well-circumscribed, nontender breast mass is appreciated. Curiously, phyllodes tumors tend to involve the left breast more commonly than the right. Overlying skin may display a shiny appearance and be translucent enough to reveal underlying breast veins. A very large phyllodes tumor may erode through overlying skin and present as an external fungating breast mass. [12] More typically, physical findings (ie, the occurrence of mobile masses with distinct borders) are similar to those of fibroadenoma. [7]