Despite modern surgical and irradiation techniques, approximately 1 in 10 women treated with lumpectomy and irradiation will experience recurrence of breast cancer in the ipsilateral breast (in-breast recurrence). Historically, this event has been managed definitively with mastectomy. However, many local recurrences are small and detected early, and even after a recurrence, long-term survival is achievable.1 Thus, there has been an interest in examining the feasibility of subsequent breast-conserving therapy. Rates of second recurrence after lumpectomy alone for first recurrence are unacceptably high,2,3 similar to those after lumpectomy alone for primary breast cancer. Fears of unacceptable toxic effects have prevented most investigators from pursuing lumpectomy with reirradiation of the whole breast; however, a number of groups reported their experience with a second lumpectomy with partial breast reirradiation (PBrI). Most studies used brachytherapy, and the largest study was the multi-institutional observational Groupe Européen de Curiethérapie and the European Society for Radiotherapy and Oncology (GEC-ESTRO) study.4 In this series, a 5-year second in-breast recurrence rate of 5.2% was reported, with a 5-year distant metastasis rate of 9.6% and overall survival of 88.7%. Regarding the cosmetic outcome, 48% of patients rated their cosmesis as excellent, with the remaining 52% rating it as fair or poor. Although these results are promising and comparable to clinical outcomes after mastectomy for in-breast recurrence, this study included a heterogeneous and incompletely defined patient population (eg, margin status was not reported). Thus, prospective data to better inform outcomes and patient selection are sorely needed.
Identify all potential conflicts of interest that might be relevant to your comment.
Conflicts of interest comprise financial interests, activities, and relationships within the past 3 years including but not limited to employment, affiliation, grants or funding, consultancies, honoraria or payment, speaker's bureaus, stock ownership or options, expert testimony, royalties, donation of medical equipment, or patents planned, pending, or issued.
Err on the side of full disclosure.
If you have no conflicts of interest, check "No potential conflicts of interest" in the box below. The information will be posted with your response.
Not all submitted comments are published. Please see our commenting policy for details.
Cook K, DiNome M. Additional Lumpectomy and Irradiation for In-Breast Recurrence of Cancer—When Less Is More. JAMA Oncol. Published online November 21, 2019. doi:https://doi.org/10.1001/jamaoncol.2019.4319
Browse and subscribe to JAMA Network podcasts!
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: