Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Mastectomy


Bilateral mastectomy is increasingly used to treat unilateral breast cancer. Because it may have medical and psychosocial complications, a better understanding of its use and outcomes is essential to optimizing cancer care.

Concepts: Medicine, Cancer, Breast cancer, Metastasis, Oncology, Chemotherapy, Breast, Mastectomy


BACKGROUND: Randomized clinical trials (RCT) have demonstrated equivalent survival for breast-conserving therapy with radiation (BCT) and mastectomy for early-stage breast cancer. A large, population-based series of women who underwent BCT or mastectomy was studied to observe whether outcomes of RCT were achieved in the general population, and whether survival differed by surgery type when stratified by age and hormone receptor (HR) status. METHODS: Information was obtained regarding all women diagnosed in the state of California with stage I or II breast cancer between 1990 and 2004, who were treated with either BCT or mastectomy and followed for vital status through December 2009. Cox proportional hazards modeling was used to compare overall survival (OS) and disease-specific survival (DSS) between BCT and mastectomy groups. Analyses were stratified by age group (< 50 years and ≥ 50 years) and tumor HR status. RESULTS: A total of 112,154 women fulfilled eligibility criteria. Women undergoing BCT had improved OS and DSS compared with women with mastectomy (adjusted hazard ratio for OS entire cohort = 0.81, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.80-0.83). The DSS benefit with BCT compared with mastectomy was greater among women age ≥ 50 with HR-positive disease (hazard ratio = 0.86, 95% CI = 0.82-0.91) than among women age < 50 with HR-negative disease (hazard ratio = 0.88, 95% CI = 0.79-0.98); however, this trend was seen among all subgroups analyzed. CONCLUSIONS: Among patients with early stage breast cancer, BCT was associated with improved DSS. These data provide confidence that BCT remains an effective alternative to mastectomy for early stage disease regardless of age or HR status. Cancer 2012;. © 2012 American Cancer Society.

Concepts: Epidemiology, Clinical trial, Cancer, Breast cancer, Cancer staging, Randomized controlled trial, American Cancer Society, Mastectomy


The rate of contralateral prophylactic mastectomies (CPMs) continues to rise, although there is little evidence to support improvement in quality of life (QOL) with CPM. We sought to ascertain whether patient-reported outcomes and, more specifically, QOL differed according to receipt of CPM.

Concepts: Life, Quality, Quality of life, According to Jim, Quality-of-life index, Mastectomy, CPM


Women diagnosed with breast cancer often describe the process of treatment decision making as bewildering and worrisome. Patients who do not feel completely informed about their surgical options might make choices that are suboptimal or regretted later. The Institute of Medicine has called for more research on why breast cancer patients are inadequately informed about treatment options. The aims of the study were to explore how women become informed about their breast cancer surgery treatment options and to identify improvement opportunities.

Concepts: Medicine, Cancer, Breast cancer, Chemotherapy, Physician, Breast, Surgical oncology, Mastectomy


Rates of contralateral prophylactic mastectomy (CPM) have markedly increased but we know little about the influence of surgeons on variability of the procedure in the community.

Concepts: Cancer, Breast cancer, Metastasis, Estrogen, Pleural effusion, Breast, Mastectomy, Radical mastectomy



Patient-to-patient variability in breast cancer progression complicates clinical treatment decisions. Of women undergoing prophylactic mastectomies, many may not have progressed to indolent forms of disease and could have benefited from milder, localized therapy. Tumor associated macrophages contribute significantly to tumor invasion and metastasis, with cysteine cathepsin proteases as important contributors. Here, a method is demonstrated by which variability in macrophage expression of cysteine cathepsins, their inhibitor cystatin C, and kinase activation can be used to train a multivariate model and score patients for invasion risk. These enzymatic profiles were used to predict macrophage-assisted MCF-7 breast cancer cell invasion in the trained computational model. To test these predictions, a priori, signals from monocytes isolated from women undergoing mastectomies were input to score their cancer invasion potential in a patient-specific manner, and successfully predicted that patient monocytes with highest predicted invasion indices matched those with more invasive initial diagnoses of the nine patients tested. Together this establishes proof-of-principle that personalized information acquired from minimally invasive blood draws may provide useful information to inform oncologists and patients of invasive/metastatic risk, helping to make decisions regarding radical mastectomy or milder, conservative treatments to save patients from hardship and surgical recovery.

Concepts: Immune system, Cancer, Breast cancer, Metastasis, Oncology, Chemotherapy, Prediction, Mastectomy


Background: Dexmedetomidine is a highly selective α2 agonist with analgesic, anxiolytic, and anti-inflammatory properties. We investigated the effect of a single dose of dexmedetomidine on patient-perceived quality of recovery and clinical recovery variables after modified radical mastectomy under general anesthesia in this randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Methods: After Institutional Review Board approval, ninety two female patients were randomly allocated to receive intravenously either saline (Group C, N.=46) or 0.5 μg/kg of dexmedetomidine (Group D, N.=46) five min before the end of surgery. The quality of recovery was assessed using a 40-item quality-of-recovery scoring system (QoR-40) preoperatively and 24 h after surgery. Pain intensity, rescue analgesics, and postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) were assessed at postanesthesia care unit (PACU), 1-6 h, and 6-24 h after surgery. Results: Postoperative global QoR-40 scores were higher in Group D compared with Group C (181 [175-187] vs. 174 [154.5-181.5], P=0.004); postoperative QoR-40 scores were improved in the dimensions of emotional state, physical comfort, and psychological support. Total amount of tramadol during 24 h after surgery was significantly lower in Group D than in Group C (54 vs. 76 mg, P=0.006). The incidence of PONV was lower in Group D than in Group C in PACU (21% vs. 43%, P=0.026) and 6-24 h period after surgery (10% vs. 41%, P=0.012). Heart rate and mean blood pressure were significantly lower in Group D as compared with Group C at 5 min after administration of dexmedetomidine, 1 min after extubation, and 20 min after arrival in PACU. Conclusion: The use of a single dose dexmedetomidine improved the quality of recovery and reduced analgesic requirements and the incidence of PONV in the early postoperative period after modified radical mastectomy.

Concepts: Randomized controlled trial, Anesthesia, Opioid, Analgesic, Vomiting, Mastectomy, Postoperative nausea and vomiting, Post anesthesia care unit


BACKGROUND: Gestational gigantomastia (GGM) is a rare complication of pregnancy. Management usually is initiated with bromocriptine. If this is unsuccessful, surgery may be required. The surgical management may be by breast reduction or by mastectomy and delayed reconstruction. CASE: A 24-year-old woman (G1P0) presented at 24 weeks gestation with massive hypertrophy of her breasts. A decision to operate was made by a multidisciplinary team. At 30 weeks gestation, bilateral mastectomies were performed, with removal of more than 8 kg per side. Reconstruction was started 10 months after delivery using tissue expanders followed by definitive implants. CONCLUSION: GGM can be successfully reconstructed. Knowledge of the treatment process and the expected outcomes can help clinicians inform their patients. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE V: This journal requires that authors assign a level of evidence to each article. For a full description of these Evidence-Based Medicine ratings, please refer to the Table of Contents or the online Instructions to Authors .

Concepts: Childbirth, Breast cancer, Evidence-based medicine, Plastic surgery, Breast, Breast reconstruction, Breast reduction, Mastectomy


The objective of this study is to design and develop a portable tool consisting of a disposable biochip for measuring electro-thermo-mechanical (ETM) properties of breast tissue.

Concepts: Cancer, Breast cancer, Diagnosis, Breast, Mastectomy