Atypical Ductal Hyperplasia

Atypical: Cells appearing irregular from normal cells.
Ductal: The ducts are the tubes that bring milk to the nipple.
Hyperplasia: Increased number of cells/higher growth rate of cells.

In atypical ductal hyperplasia (ADH), there is an increase in atypical cells within the breast ducts. The cells lining the ducts have a faster growth rate, there are more of them and they appear irregular from normal cells. The management and recommended treatment of atypical ductal hyperplasia detected in a needle core biopsy is excision biopsy by a surgeon. This is to examine more tissue under a microscope to make sure that it is not a more worrisome cancer or pre-cancer finding. Current studies show a small percentage of these prove to be pre-cancer (DCIS: ductal carcinoma in situ) or invasive cancer.

Having atypical ductal hyperplasia adds to your personal risk factors for developing breast cancer.

You may discuss your specific risk factors for breast cancer with your health care provider or genetic counselor.

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