National Cancer Institute Home at the National Institutes of Health |
Please wait while this form is being loaded....
The Applied Research Program Web site is no longer maintained. ARP's former staff have moved to the new Healthcare Delivery Research Program, the Behavioral Research Program, or the Epidemiology & Genomics Research Program, and the content from this Web site is being moved to one of those sites as appropriate. Please update your links and bookmarks!

Publication Abstract

Authors: Silverman D, Ruth K, Sigurdson ER, Egleston BL, Goldstein LJ, Wong YN, Boraas M, Bleicher RJ

Title: Skin involvement and breast cancer: are T4b lesions of all sizes created equal?

Journal: J Am Coll Surg 219(3):534-44

Date: 2014 Sep

Abstract: BACKGROUND: Nonmetastatic, noninflammatory, invasive breast cancers with skin involvement (SI) are classified as T4b, regardless of size. This study evaluated disease-specific survival (DSS) to determine whether size should be considered for these lesions rather than grouping them all into stage III. STUDY DESIGN: Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results data linked to Medicare claims were reviewed. Skin involved and non-SI tumors were reclassified using the American Joint Committee on Cancer, 7(th) edition groupings using tumor size and nodal involvement alone without considering SI (neostage). Disease-specific survival was adjusted for demographics, histology, and treatment using competing risk methods with propensity score-based weighting and bootstrap standard errors. RESULTS: Among 924 SI patients diagnosed between 1992 and 2005, tumors were 0.1 to 2.0 cm, 2.1 to 5.0 cm, and >5.0 cm in 11.6%, 51.1%, and 37.3% of patients, respectively. There were no nodal metastases in 22.3%, 1 to 3 positive nodes in 31.7%, 4 to 9 positive in 28.6%, and ≥10 positive in 17.4% of patients. For SI patients, adjusted 5-year DSS was 95.8% (95% CI, 95.6-96.0) for neostage I, declining progressively to 36.4% (95% CI, 33.8-39.2) for neostage IIIC patients. Adjusted 5-year DSS for SI and non-SI tumors (n = 66,185) was similar for neostage I, IIA, and IIB, and markedly lower for IIIA and IIIC. Adjusted DSS for SI IIIA was similar to non-SI IIIC. CONCLUSIONS: Noninflammatory SI breast cancers have widely varied DSS that differs by tumor size and nodal involvement and therefore should not all be stage III. Skin involvement should be subordinate to T and N groupings to classify SI with non-SI lesions having similar prognoses.

Last Modified: 03 Sep 2013