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Br J Cancer. 2007 Mar 26;96(6):891-5.

Evaluation of the relationship between the systemic inflammatory response and cancer-specific survival in patients with primary operable breast cancer.

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Royal Infirmary, University Department of Surgery, Glasgow, UK.


The relationship between the systemic inflammatory response (as evidenced by elevated C-reactive protein and lowered albumin concentrations), clinico-pathologic status and relapse-free, cancer-specific and overall survival was examined in patients with invasive primary operable breast cancer (n=300). The median follow-up of the survivors was 46 months. During this period, 37 patients relapsed and 25 died of their cancer. On multivariate analysis, only tumour size (P<0.05), albumin (P<0.01) and systemic treatment (P<0.0001) were significant independent predictors of relapse-free, cancer-specific and overall survival. Lower serum albumin concentrations (<or=43 g l(-1)) were associated with deprivation (P<0.05), hormonal receptor negative tumours (P<0.01) and significantly poorer 3-year relapse-free (85 vs 93%, P=0.001) cancer-specific (87 vs 97%, P<0.0001) and overall survival (84 vs 94%, P=0.001) rates. The results of the present study suggest that lower preoperative albumin concentrations, but not elevated C-reactive protein concentrations, predict relapse-free, cancer-specific and overall survival, independent of clinico-pathologic status and treatment in patients undergoing potentially curative surgery for primary operable breast cancer.

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