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Case report
An uncommon cause for a breast abscess: Actinomyces turicensis with Peptoniphilus harei
  1. Audrey Le Bihan1,
  2. Farid Ahmed2 and
  3. Jean O'Driscoll3
  1. 1General Surgery, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, Aylesbury, UK
  2. 2Breast Surgery, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, Aylesbury, UK
  3. 3Microbiology, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, Aylesbury, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Audrey Le Bihan; audrey.lebihan{at}


Our case report describes a patient with a common presenting complaint yet an uncommon infection. Our patient presented with a fluctuant breast mass diagnosed as a breast abscess. An aspirate sample was sent for culture and sensitivities, which revealed the presence of Actinomyces turicensis and the anaerobe Peptoniphilus harei. She was therefore prescribed several weeks of amoxicillin and metronidazole, and made a full recovery. There are only three case reports describing A. turicensis as a causative organism for breast abscess, one of which had also occurred in our department. One case also showed the additional presence of P. harei. Our findings reveal a growing need for increasing clinician awareness of A. turicensis and the importance of aspirate sample culture and sensitivity.

  • infections
  • medical management
  • breast surgery

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  • Contributors FA was involved in diagnosing and managing the patient whose case is described in the article. He also obtained their consent. ALB subsequently wrote a first draft of the article, which was then reviewed by FA with annotations and answers to any outstanding questions. ALB subsequently reviewed the draft and submitted it for publication at the BMJ Case Report journal. As requested by the BMJ Case Report reviewers, JO, consultant microbiologist, subsequently contributed to the article by adding further details about the organisms involved.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.