J Cancer 2012; 3:328-332. doi:10.7150/jca.4735 This volume


Infiltrating Lobular Carcinoma of the Breast Presenting as Gastrointestinal Obstruction: A Mini Review

P Carcoforo1, MT Raiji2, RC Langan2, S Lanzara1, M Portinari1, U Maestroni3, GM Palini1, MV Zanzi1, S Bonazza1, M Pedriali4, CV Feo1, A Stojadinovic5, I Avital6 ✉

1. Section of General Surgery, Department of Surgical, Anaesthesiological and Radiological Sciences, Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria, Arcispedale Sant'Anna, Ferrara, Italy.
2. Department of Surgery, Georgetown University Hospital, Washington DC, USA.
3. Department of Surgery, University Hospital of Parma, Parma, Italy.
4. Section of Pathology, Department of Experimental and Diagnostic Medicine, University of Ferrara, Italy.
5. Department of Surgery, Division of Surgical Oncology, Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, Bethesda, MD, USA.
6. Bon Secours Cancer Institute, Bon Secours Hospital, Richmond VA, USA.

This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY-NC) License. See http://ivyspring.com/terms for full terms and conditions.
Carcoforo P, Raiji MT, Langan RC, Lanzara S, Portinari M, Maestroni U, Palini GM, Zanzi MV, Bonazza S, Pedriali M, Feo CV, Stojadinovic A, Avital I. Infiltrating Lobular Carcinoma of the Breast Presenting as Gastrointestinal Obstruction: A Mini Review. J Cancer 2012; 3:328-332. doi:10.7150/jca.4735. Available from https://www.jcancer.org/v03p0328.htm

File import instruction


One in twelve American women will develop breast cancer, with infiltrating lobular carcinoma (ILC) comprising approximately 15% of these cases. The incidence of ILC has been increasing over the last several decades. It has been hypothesized that this increase is associated with combined replacement hormonal therapy. Although pathologically distinct from infiltrating ductal carcinoma (IDC), ILC is treated in the same manner as IDC. However, ILC demonstrates significantly different patterns of late local recurrence and distant metastasis. The incidence of extra-hepatic gastrointestinal metastases is reported to be 6% to 18%, with stomach being most common. Herein, we present a brief review of the literature and a typical case involving ILC initially presenting as a small bowel obstruction. Evidence suggests that the late clinical patterns of ILC are distinctly separate from IDC and physicians need be cognizant of its late local recurrence and unique late metastatic pattern. Different follow up strategy should be entertained in patients with ILC.

Keywords: breast cancer, infiltrating lobular carcinoma