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Ann Surg Oncol. 2013 Apr;20(4):1323-8. doi: 10.1245/s10434-012-2775-7. Epub 2012 Dec 11.

Lumpectomy closure technique does not affect dosimetry in patients undergoing external-beam-based accelerated partial breast irradiation.

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Department of Radiation Oncology, The Cancer Institute of New Jersey, UMDNJ/Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, New Brunswick, NJ, USA.



During the breast lumpectomy procedure, surgeons traditionally elect to use either a superficial or full-thickness closure when sealing the wound depending on surgeon preference as well as desired outcomes. The purpose of this study was to examine dosimetric endpoints in patients with superficial versus full-thickness closures with accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI).


Patients who underwent breast conservation surgery followed by 3D conformal external-beam APBI were identified (n = 45) and were separated according to the type of cavity closure performed: superficial and full thickness. Data gathered from the retrospective review of patient charts was analyzed according to criteria in the NSABP B-39 protocol in order to quantify the amount of radiation delivered to organs at risk. The patient seroma cavity was further given a cavity visualization score to assess the impact of wound closure on treatment planning.


There was no significant difference in the mean CVS score for the 2 groups. There were no statistical differences in all dosimetric endpoints compared for the 2 types of closure, and both groups met NSABP B-39 guidelines for the ipsilateral breast, heart, and ipsilateral lung dosimetry.


We found no significant difference in dosimetric outcomes in either the superficial or deep closure treatment groups. Breast surgeons should not alter their preferred closure strategy in anticipation of 3D-CRT APBI.

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