Pregnancy associated breast cancer
is defined as breast cancer diagnosed during pregnancy or in the first
postpartum year. The incidence is rare; however it is important to be aware of
its occurrence with the increased challenges posed by delays in diagnosis,
treatment and optimization of maternal and fetal outcomes. The case report
presented is of a 36 years old, Para 0 + 2 known diabetic and hypertensive
pregnant woman, first seen in the antenatal clinic at 14 weeks of gestation.
The patient requested for a breast examination
following National campaigns conducted during the International Breast
Cancer Awareness month. The examination revealed a grossly enlarged right
breast with “peau de orange” skin changes. The patient eventually underwent
radical mastectomy. Histopathology revealed a grade 3 invasive ductal carcinoma
with lymphovascular invasion (Stage TNM). This case is presented to highlight
missed opportunities in antenatal clinic settings for screening, diagnosis
and treatment of cancer of the breast in pregnancy. The role of a
multidisciplinary approach to management has also been emphasized.