Malignant phyllodes tumor

Malignant phyllodes tumor of the breast accounts for up to a quarter of the phyllodes tumors.

Please, refer to the main article on phyllodes tumors for a general discussion. 

It is generally thought that it is the stromal component that becomes malignant 4. This may account for their haematogenous metastatic pattern.

A substantial overlap in the imaging characteristics has been reported between benign and malignant phyllodes tumors. A tumor diameter of 3 cm or greater has been generally reported to be associated with a higher likelihood of malignancy 3.

Fewer than 20% of the malignant tumors metastasize. When metastatic disease does occur, the metastases usually spread haematogenously to the lungs, pleura, or bone. Surgery is the mainstay of treatment as they are not proven to be sensitive to radiotherapy or chemotherapy. Because lymphatic metastasis is rare, axillary nodal surgery is not indicated.

Breast imaging and pathology
Share article

Article information

rID: 15265
System: Breast
Tag: cases, cases
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Malignant phyllodes tumours
  • Malignant phyllodes tumor
  • Malignant phyllodes tumors
  • Malignant phyllodes tumours of the breast
  • Malignant cystosarcoma phyllodes

Support Radiopaedia and see fewer ads

Updating… Please wait.

 Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

 Thank you for updating your details.