IgG4-related sclerosing mastitis: description of a new member of the IgG4-related sclerosing diseases

Am J Surg Pathol. 2009 Jul;33(7):1058-64. doi: 10.1097/PAS.0b013e3181998cbe.


Immunoglobulin G (IgG)4-related sclerosing disease is a recently described syndrome characterized by mass-forming lesions in various organs due to dense lymphoplasmacytic infiltrates and stromal sclerosis, elevated serum IgG4 titer, increased tissue IgG4 plasma cells, and favorable clinical outcome. We describe 4 patients with IgG4-related sclerosing mastitis, which represents a new member of this family of diseases. All patients were female with a mean age of 47.5 years, presenting with painless masses in 1 or both breasts. One patient had concurrent IgG4-related lymphadenopathy, and another had eyelid swelling of undetermined cause. The serum IgG4 titer was elevated in 1 tested patient, and circulating autoantibodies were found in 3 tested patients. All patients were well with no recurrence after excision or biopsy of the mass. Histologically, the breast masses featured dense lymphoplasmacytic infiltrates, prominent stromal sclerosis and loss of breast lobules. Phlebitis was present in 1 case. IgG4 cells ranged from 272 to 495 per high-power field, constituting 49% to 85% of all IgG cells. IgG4 cells were scarce in 9 of 9 cases of lymphocytic mastitis and 6 of 7 cases of granulomatous mastitis studied as controls. In summary, IgG4-related sclerosing mastitis appears to be a distinctive form of mastitis, sometimes accompanied by other components of IgG4-related sclerosing disease, and shows a favorable clinical outcome.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Extracellular Matrix / pathology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G*
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lymphocytes / pathology
  • Mastitis / pathology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Plasma Cells / pathology
  • Sclerosis / pathology


  • Immunoglobulin G