Myofibroblastic, fibroblastic and myoid lesions of the breast

Semin Diagn Pathol. 2017 Sep;34(5):427-437. doi: 10.1053/j.semdp.2017.05.010. Epub 2017 May 28.


Myofibroblastic, fibroblastic and/or myoid lesions are rare in the breast but comprise the majority of mammary mesenchymal spindle cell lesions. Whereas most have similar features to their counterparts at extramammary sites, pseudoangiomatous stromal hyperplasia is considered a breast-specific myofibroblastic proliferation on the same spectrum as myofibroblastoma. Other lesions with myofibroblastic/fibroblastic differentiation include fibromatosis and nodular fasciitis, as well as more aggressive tumors such as the rarely reported myofibrosarcoma, inflammatory myofibroblastic tumor and fibrosarcoma. Lesions with myoid differentiation include benign leiomyoma, myoid hamartoma and leiomyomatous myofibroblastoma, but primary leiomyosarcoma and rhabdomyosarcoma may also rarely arise in the breast. Furthermore, fibroepithelial lesions and metaplastic carcinomas can demonstrate myoid metaplasia. Diagnosis can be challenging, particularly on core biopsy, but benign lesions with or without recurrence potential must be distinguished from more aggressive tumors, especially metaplastic carcinoma and phyllodes tumors. This article will review lesions with myofibroblastic, fibroblastic and myoid differentiation in the breast, with special emphasis on differential diagnosis.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis
  • Biopsy
  • Breast Neoplasms / chemistry
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Fibroblasts / chemistry
  • Fibroblasts / pathology*
  • Fibroma / chemistry
  • Fibroma / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Myofibroblasts / chemistry
  • Myofibroblasts / pathology*
  • Neoplasms, Muscle Tissue / chemistry
  • Neoplasms, Muscle Tissue / pathology*
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prognosis
  • Sarcoma / chemistry
  • Sarcoma / pathology


  • Biomarkers, Tumor