Metastatic breast cancer masquerading as gastrointestinal primary

Roderich E. Schwarz, David S. Klimstra, Alan D M Turnbull

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

Seven patients with metastatic breast cancer presenting as gastrointestinal primary are described. These included six gastric and one colonic lesions. None of the patients had known systemic metastases at the time of diagnosis. The mean age at presentation was 66.7 yr (range 55-78). Median interval between breast cancer and gastrointestinal metastasis diagnosis was 6 yr (range 0.25-12.5). Original breast cancer histology included infiltrating lobular cancer (n = 4), infiltrating ductal cancer (n = 1), and a mixed type (n = 2). All patients with gastric involvement presented with epigastric pain and early satiety; the patient with colonic involvement had heme-positive stool. In three cases of gastric tumor and the one case of colonic tumor presentation, a definitive diagnosis of metastatic breast cancer was only confirmed after surgical resection of a presumed primary gastric or colonic malignancy. In the other three cases, pathological diagnostic confirmation was obtained through endoscopic biopsies and comparison to breast biopsy material, and operative treatment was avoided in favor of systemic cytotoxic therapy. The diagnosis was confirmed through similarities between mammary and gastric histopathology with regard to growth pattern, hormone receptor status, or gross cystic disease fluid protein. A high level of suspicion for metastatic breast cancer and a detailed pathological analysis will help avoid unnecessary surgical treatment in patients with a history of mammary carcinoma presenting with a newly diagnosed gastrointestinal neoplasm.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)111-114
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Gastroenterology
Volume93
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1998

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Stomach
Breast Neoplasms
Neoplasms
Breast
Neoplasm Metastasis
Somatotropin Receptors
Biopsy
Gastrointestinal Neoplasms
Heme
Histology
Therapeutics
Pain
Proteins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology

Cite this

Metastatic breast cancer masquerading as gastrointestinal primary. / Schwarz, Roderich E.; Klimstra, David S.; Turnbull, Alan D M.

In: American Journal of Gastroenterology, Vol. 93, No. 1, 01.1998, p. 111-114.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Schwarz, Roderich E. ; Klimstra, David S. ; Turnbull, Alan D M. / Metastatic breast cancer masquerading as gastrointestinal primary. In: American Journal of Gastroenterology. 1998 ; Vol. 93, No. 1. pp. 111-114.
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