Two cases of dermatopathic lymphadenitis involved external mammary lymph nodes and presented clinically as breast masses. The variable position and number of external mammary lymph nodes account for the difficulty in differentiating intrinsic breast pathological conditions of the lateral margin of the breast from lymphadenitis. Recent publicity may account for a lower threshold for detection of such lesions by patients as well as physicians. Dermatopathic lymphadenitis should be included in the differential diagnosis of persistent solid masses involving the lateral margin of the breast and should be confirmed by excisional biopsy.
(JAMA 240:1622-1623, 1978)