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Outcome of radiotherapy after breast conserving surgery in screen detected breast cancers.

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Christie Hospital, Manchester, UK.


The treatment outcomes were reviewed for all the patients at this institute who underwent breast irradiation after breast conserving surgery in 1991. Of a total of 643 patients treated, 194 (30%) had presented with tumours detected by screening mammography. The breast was irradiated with a tangential pair of fields, giving a dose of 40 Gy in 15 fractions over 3 weeks in 97% of these patients. A boost was not used. With a median follow-up of 4.7 years, there was better cancer related survival in patients with screen detected cancers compared with those that were non-screen detected (94% versus 84% at 5 years; P = 0.002). The breast recurrence rate at 5 years was 1% for screen detected cancers compared with 6% for those that were non-screen detected (P = 0.01). Factors additional to screen detected status that were found to be significant for cancer survival were pathological stage (P = 0.03) and histological grade (P = 0.01). In a Cox multivariate analysis, only two factors were significant for breast recurrence: screen detected status (P = 0.023) and histological grade (P = 0.016). This study suggests that breast irradiation with 40 Gy given over 3 weeks after breast conserving surgery for screen detected breast cancer gives a high level of local control out to 5 years.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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