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Clin Breast Cancer. 2010 Oct 1;10(5):385-91. doi: 10.3816/CBC.2010.n.051.

Compliance differences between patients with breast cancer in university and county hospitals.

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Department of Surgery, Indiana University, IN 46202, USA.



Compliance with recommended breast cancer treatments outside the context of a clinical trial differs from that in study populations. The purpose of this study was to examine differences in compliance of breast cancer treatments.


We conducted a retrospective review of 529 patients treated at 2 teaching hospitals in the same city from 2003 to 2006. Compliance with adjuvant therapy recommendations and choice of breast-conserving operations were compared between a university hospital (UH) and a county hospital (CH).


The 2 populations demonstrated similar rates of breast conservation (72% vs. 69%). Although use of radiation therapy at the CH was acceptable (82%), patients at the UH were more likely to undergo radiation therapy (95%). The use of hormone therapy was similar at the UH and the CH (> 93%). Patients were more likely to follow physician recommendations for adjuvant chemotherapy at the UH (89%) compared with the CH (70%; P = .0005). Univariate analysis revealed that patient age, tumor size, stage, grade, and estrogen receptor status were all significant predictors of patient compliance with chemotherapy. Preoperative chemotherapy was a strong predictor of patient compliance with chemotherapy (P < .0001). In multivariate analysis, all of the factors predictive of patient compliance in univariate analysis remained significant except tumor grade.


Preoperative chemotherapy appeared to increase compliance compared with adjuvant chemotherapy in the CH population. Compared with national standards, breast-conserving operations and radiation therapy compliance can be accomplished in an acceptable percentage of underinsured patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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