Double mastectomy may not boost life expectancy
Washington: Women suffering from cancer in one breast, and having their healthy breast removed are not going to enjoy increased life expectancy, a new study has suggested.
Study co-author Todd M. Tuttle, MD, FACS, chief of surgical oncology, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, said that this research will provide physicians and patients with accurate and easily understood information about whether removal of the healthy breast will impact their survival at all.
To better understand the effect of contralateral prophylactic mastectomy (CPM) on life expectancy, the researchers conducted an analytic modelling study among women without a BRCA gene mutation.
Within this group, the researchers compared women who underwent CPM with women who did have early-stage breast cancer in one breast and no prophylactic operation to remove the second breast.
The study authors primarily analyzed data from the Early Breast Cancer Trialists' Collaborative Group (EBCTCG) and the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) program to determine the risk of developing contralateral breast cancer (CBC), dying from CBC, dying from primary breast cancer, and the reduction in CBC due to CPM.
The two databases include information on the treatment and survival of early breast cancer and include more than 100,000 women who have participated in randomized trials over the last 30 years across the US.
For the study, the researchers estimated the life expectancy gain of CPM among sub-groups of women newly diagnosed with cancer in one breast by age 40 to 60 years, estrogen receptor status as positive or negative, and stage of cancer I or II.
They found that the maximum life expectancy gain for women who underwent CPM was six months for all scenarios including age, estrogen receptor status, and cancer stage groups.