Send to

Choose Destination
AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2013 Feb;200(2):W204-12. doi: 10.2214/AJR.12.9560.

Pediatric and adolescent breast masses: a review of pathophysiology, imaging, diagnosis, and treatment.

Author information

Department of Radiology, Penn State University, PO Box 850, Hershey, PA 17033 USA.



Pediatric breast masses are relatively rare and most are benign. Most are either secondary to normal developmental changes or neoplastic processes with a relatively benign behavior. To fully understand pediatric breast disease, it is important to have a firm comprehension of normal development and of the various tumors that can arise. Physical examination and targeted history (including family history) are key to appropriate patient management. When indicated, ultrasound is the imaging modality of choice. The purpose of this article is to review the benign breast conditions that arise as part of the spectrum of normal breast development, as well as the usually benign but neoplastic process that may develop within an otherwise normal breast. Rare primary carcinomas and metastatic lesions to the pediatric breast will also be addressed. The associated imaging findings will be reviewed, as well as treatment strategies for clinical management of the pediatric patient with signs or symptoms of breast disease.


The majority of breast abnormalities in the pediatric patient are benign, but malignancies do occur. Careful attention to patient presentation, history, and clinical findings will help guide appropriate imaging and therapeutic decisions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon
Loading ...
Support Center