Men and women show similar survival rates after breast cancer

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Abstract

Purpose

To compare the disease-free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS) rates of men and women undergoing treatment for breast cancer.

Methods

A retrospective cohort study of patients with breast cancer diagnosed and treated at the Cancer Hospital III of the National Cancer Institute of Brazil, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, between 1999 and 2013. Male breast cancer cases were matched for age, year of diagnosis, and clinical staging to three female cases (1:3). Patient characteristics were abstracted from hospital records and medical charts. Cases were analyzed using descriptive statistics, and comparisons between the genders were performed using Kaplan–Meier curves and Cox regression analysis with 95% confidence intervals.

Results

The study population comprised 98 men and 294 women. There were significant differences (p < 0.05) between the genders for marital status, alcohol consumption, smoking, presence of hypertension and other comorbidities, histological type of tumor, expression of estrogen receptors, progesterone receptors, human epidermal growth factor receptor-type 2, type of breast surgery, neoadjuvant chemotherapy, adjuvant radiotherapy, and use of palliative bisphosphonate therapy. Five- and 10-year DFS rates were, respectively, 80.0 and 51.4% for men and 71.4 and 63.5% for women (p = 0.245), and 5- and 10-year OS rates were, respectively, 65.0 and 47.5% for men and 56.5 and 41.4% for women (p = 0.221).

Conclusion

There was no significant difference in prognosis (DFS and OS rates) between the genders, but significant differences in sociodemographic and clinical characteristics were detected between male and female breast cancer cases.

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Correspondence to Luiz Claudio Santos Thuler.

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Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. The study was approved by the Committee of Ethics in Research of the National Cancer Institute of Brazil (INCA) on July 19, 2013, under Protocol Number CAAE 12107913.5274.

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Bender, P.F.M., de Oliveira, L.L., Costa, C.R. et al. Men and women show similar survival rates after breast cancer. J Cancer Res Clin Oncol 143, 563–571 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00432-016-2311-4

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Keywords

  • Male breast cancer
  • Overall survival
  • Disease-free survival
  • Prognosis