Breast Cancer

, Volume 20, Issue 1, pp 67–74 | Cite as

Women prefer adjuvant endocrine therapy to chemotherapy for breast cancer treatment

  • Naoki NiikuraEmail author
  • Morihiko Kimura
  • Takayuki Iwamoto
  • Naoki Hayashi
  • Junichi Shintoku
  • Yuki Saito
  • Yasuhiro Suzuki
  • Yutaka Tokuda
Original Article



We attempted to determine the preferences of women regarding the benefits they considered necessary to make adjuvant therapy worthwhile, and to compare preferences for adjuvant endocrine therapy, chemotherapy, and trastuzumab therapy. We also investigated the effect of information about cost on women’s treatment preferences.

Patients and methods

Consecutive women who had a medical examination at the Breast Clinic, Ota General Hospital, were included in our study. We collected a questionnaire from a total of 365 women; 297 completed responses were included in the study.


Among 297 women, 105 had breast cancer that had been treated and 192 did not have breast cancer; 38% of women judged that a 5% or less gain in the probability of survival was sufficient to make endocrine therapy worthwhile; 28% of participants judged that chemotherapy was worthwhile; 24% of participants judged that trastuzumab therapy was worthwhile. Women indicated that they were more likely to receive adjuvant endocrine therapy than chemotherapy or trastuzumab therapy, for the same gains in the probability of survival. Cost information about treatments did not affect women’s treatment preferences. Younger women tended to judge improvements in survival sufficient to make adjuvant endocrine and chemotherapy worthwhile, as compared to older women. The comparisons were statistically significant in the 10 and 20% categories for endocrine therapy and chemotherapy.


Women prefer endocrine therapy to chemotherapy or trastuzumab therapy, given the same projected treatment benefits. Younger women prefer both chemotherapy and endocrine therapy as compared with older woman.


Preference Adjuvant therapy Breast cancer 


Conflict of interest

All authors did not have conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© The Japanese Breast Cancer Society 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Naoki Niikura
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Morihiko Kimura
    • 2
  • Takayuki Iwamoto
    • 3
  • Naoki Hayashi
    • 4
  • Junichi Shintoku
    • 2
  • Yuki Saito
    • 1
  • Yasuhiro Suzuki
    • 1
  • Yutaka Tokuda
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Breast and Endocrine SurgeryTokai University School of MedicineIseharaJapan
  2. 2.Department of SurgeryOta General HospitalGunmaJapan
  3. 3.Department of Gastroenterological Surgery and Surgical OncologyOkayama UniversityOkayamaJapan
  4. 4.Department of Breast Surgical OncologySt. Luke’s International HospitalTokyoJapan

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