Flat Epithelial Atypia (FEA)

Flat Epithelial Atypia (FEA)

Flat Epithelial Atypia (FEA) is not breast cancer, but rather a set of benign lesions found in breast tissue collected through a biopsy. In rare cases, FEA may indicate the presence of other breast abnormalities in neighboring breast tissue that may require further evaluation. This lesion usually requires more frequent imaging follow-up and often surgical excision.
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Finding Flat Epithelial Atypia (FEA) in Biopsy Results

While FEA lesions are not cancerous, their presence in biopsy results can be an indicator of other breast conditions, such as atypical ductal hyperplasia or ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), which may require further testing of the surrounding breast tissue. The majority of FEA lesions are usually associated with calcifications. Cases of FEA resulting in DCIS or cancer are quoted in literature at rates between 2 – 8%, but possible.

Breast Cancer Biopsy

When an abnormality is found, the breast radiologists usually perform one of three types of biopsies to evaluate suspicious growths or shadows (white spots that appear on the film results of a mammogram) in the breasts. Dr. Sadia Khan and the Radiology team at Hoag Breast Center will determine what type of biopsy to perform on a patient to patient basis, depending on factors like the size, shape, and location of the suspicious tissue.

Fine-Needle Aspiration and Biopsy

For breast lumps believed to be composed of mostly fluid, fine-needle aspiration is typically used to extract the fluid from the mass, at which point it should collapse after the fluid has been removed. If further examination of a remaining mass is needed, a fine-needle aspiration biopsy is performed, which draws cells from the mass to be examined for the presence of cancer under a microscope.


Core Needle Biopsy

Similar to a needle aspiration, a core needle biopsy uses a hollow needle to take a sample of suspicious breast tissue for examination. Local anesthesia is used, and a marker is placed at the site of the biopsy in case the pathology indicates that surgery might be necessary later on.

Surgical Biopsy

A surgical biopsy is performed to remove the entire lump or mass, or just sample the area not previously biopsied by the radiologist.  Although it is performed in a hospital setting, surgical biopsies are usually performed under local anesthetic as well.

Breast Cancer Biopsy in Newport Beach, CA

To learn more about Flat Epithelial Atypia (FEA) and other benign breast conditions, and to schedule a screening mammogram, contact Dr. Sadia Khan at the Hoag Breast Center today at (949) 860-7357 to request an appointment.


Contact a Breast Cancer Specialist Today

For compassionate, professional diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer, do not hesitate to contact Dr. Sadia Khan, a fellowship-trained breast surgeon at Hoag Breast Care Center in Newport Beach. Please call 949.390.9381 to schedule a comprehensive consultation today!



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