"Axillary recurrences after sentinel lymph node biopsy: A multicentre analysis and follow-up of sentinel lymph node negative breast cancer patients"
SourceEuropean Journal of Surgical Oncology, 38, 10, (2012), pp. 925-931
Article / Letter to editor
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European Journal of Surgical Oncology
SubjectONCOL 4: Quality of Care
INTRODUCTION: The objective of this study was to conduct a multicentre data analysis to identify prognostic factors for developing an axillary recurrence (AR) after negative sentinel lymph node biopsy (SLNB) in a large cohort of breast cancer patients with long follow-up. PATIENTS AND METHODS: The prospective databases from different hospitals of clinically node negative breast cancer patients operated on between, 2000 and 2002 were analyzed. SLNB was performed and pathological analysis done by local pathologists according to national guidelines. Adjuvant treatment was given according to contemporary guidelines. Multivariate analysis was performed using all available variables, a p-value of <0,05 was considered to be significant. RESULTS: A total of 929 patients who did not undergo axillary lymph node dissection were identified. After a median follow up of 77 (range 1-106) months, fifteen patients developed an isolated AR (AR rate 1,6%). Multivariate analysis showed that young age (p = 0.007) and the absence of radiotherapy (p = 0.010) significantly increased the risk of developing an AR. Distant metastasis free survival (DMFS) was significantly worse for patients with an AR compared to all other breast cancer patients (p < 0,0001). CONCLUSION: Even after long-term follow up, the risk of developing an AR after a negative SLN in breast cancer is low. Young age and absence of radiation therapy are highly significant factors for developing an axillary recurrence. DMFS is worse for AR patients compared to patients initially diagnosed with N0 or N1 disease.
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