An intraductal papilloma is a noncancerous (benign) small growth
inside a milk duct in the breast. It may appear on the skin near the nipple as
a growth that looks like a wart.
Single intraductal papillomas often occur in women nearing
menopause. They can produce a bloody or sticky nipple discharge. Multiple
intraductal papillomas are more likely to occur in younger women. They may be
found in both breasts and are more likely to cause a lump than nipple
Intraductal papillomas usually are first suspected from an
evaluation of symptoms and a breast exam. A diagnosis can be confirmed with:
Mammogram (breast X-ray). Women younger than 35
may have a ultrasound of the breast rather than a mammogram.
Laboratory examination of cells from the growth. Cells from the
intraductal papilloma may be collected using a small needle and syringe (fine-needle aspiration) or by taking a tissue sample (core biopsy).
It is important to have an intraductal papilloma, as well as any
other breast changes, evaluated and closely monitored by a doctor.
You may not need treatment. But an intraductal papilloma and the affected
duct can be removed if symptoms do not go away or are bothersome.