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Research Letter
November 2017

Beyond the Margins—Economic Costs and Complications Associated With Repeated Breast-Conserving Surgeries

Author Affiliations
  • 1Health Care Services Corporation, Chicago, Illinois
  • 2Diagnostic Photonics, Inc., Chicago, Illinois
  • 3Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland
  • 4University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas
JAMA Surg. 2017;152(11):1084-1086. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2017.2661

For early stage breast cancer, breast-conserving surgery (BCS) is a compelling alternative to mastectomy, resulting in lower complication rates,1 equivalent patient-reported quality of life and cosmesis,2 and equivalent or better survival rates.3 Unfortunately, these benefits may not be fully realized in women who undergo repeated surgery, usually to increase the resection margin.4 Although considerable attention has been drawn to this problem, the costs and complications resulting from additional operations are not well-characterized. Herein we present a retrospective review of insurance claims data for BCS patients performed to assess clinical complications and economic outcomes.

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