Breast infections with atypical mycobacteria following reduction mammaplasty

Aesthet Surg J. Jul-Aug 2010;30(4):542-8. doi: 10.1177/1090820X10380543.


Reduction mammaplasty is one of the most common plastic surgery procedures performed in the US, with the goal of correcting symptomatic macromastia. More than 70,000 cases were performed in 2009, with few complications and low infection rates. The authors present two cases of breast infections with Mycobacterium fortuitum and one with Mycobacterium chelonei following bilateral reduction mammaplasty. Infection with these organisms is exceptionally rare following breast surgery in the absence of a prosthetic implant. All of the patients had a delayed presentation following complete wound healing and were refractory to first-line antibiotic therapy. All three required long-term antibiotics in consultation with an infectious disease specialist. The patients all required surgical drainage, and two patients also required formal operative debridement. All three patients eventually went on to complete wound healing.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Debridement / methods
  • Drainage / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mammaplasty / adverse effects*
  • Middle Aged
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / etiology*
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / microbiology
  • Mycobacterium Infections, Nontuberculous / therapy
  • Mycobacterium chelonae / isolation & purification
  • Mycobacterium fortuitum / isolation & purification
  • Surgical Wound Infection / microbiology*
  • Surgical Wound Infection / therapy
  • Wound Healing


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents