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Radiation Fibrosis - Breast Fibrosis from Radiation

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Updated May 28, 2010

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

Definition: Fibrosis is the formation of scar tissue. Fibrosis can occur as a result of radiation treatments. While radiation is being given, it affects cancer cells and healthy tissue that is nearby. In healthy tissue, small blood vessels in the area may be damaged or sealed off. When this happens, the affected tissue no longer gets enough nourishment. Radiated healthy tissue may then "fibrose" or scar. That scar tissue will feel firm or may feel like a mass or even like a recurrence of cancer. Fibrosis may also occur naturally in breast tissue that has fibrocystic changes.
Also Known As: radiation fibrosis, breast fibrosclerosis, breast fibrosis
Common Misspellings: fibrosys, fiberosis, fibrocys
Examples:
After partial breast radiation, some dense areas on my mammogram and ultrasounds turned out to be radiation fibrosis. I was glad to know that fibrosis is a benign condition and that I did not have a recurrence of breast cancer.
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