Pleomorphic lobular breast cancer, light micrograph

Pleomorphic lobular breast cancer, light micrograph

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Credit: WEBPATHOLOGY/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Pleomorphic lobular breast cancer. Light micrograph of a tissue sample from a form of invasive lobular breast cancer. This type of breast cancer arises in milk-producing glands (lobules) of the breast. This aggressive form is known as pleomorphic lobular carcinoma (PLC). It resembles the classical tumour in growth pattern but the tumour cells show more abundant cytoplasm, marked nuclear pleomorphism, nuclear hyperchromasia, prominent nucleoli and increased mitotic rate (cell division). These pleomorphic cells have large hyperchromatic nuclei (dark purple) infiltrating densely fibrotic stroma. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. Symptoms include painless lumps in the breast, a dark discharge from the nipple, and an indentation of the nipple. Early diagnosis can be made by mammography or self-examination. Once a cancer has spread, the prognosis is poor.

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