Histopathological characterization of ulcerated breast cancer and comparison to their non-ulcerated counterparts
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Approximately 6–15 % of breast cancer patients are diagnosed with primary ulcerated breast cancer (ULBC). ULBC is known to be associated with short recurrence free and poor overall survival. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to characterize ULBC and compare the histopathological findings with those of non-ulcerative breast cancer (NULBC). A total of 152 ULBCs were evaluated and compared to 304 consecutive non-ulcerated, age-matched breast malignancies. Patients mean age was 65 years (SD = 13.0 ULBC, SD = 14.0 NULBC). ULBC was associated with a higher rate of poorly differentiated tumors (p = <0.001), as well as larger tumor sizes (p = <0.001). As expected, the rate of axillary lymph node involvement was higher in ULBC patients (p = <0.001). In addition to that, ULBC was associated with a higher rate of triple negative breast cancer (p = 0.002), and higher Ki67 expression (p = <0.001). ULBC showed more aggressive histopathological features in comparison to NULBC which may contribute to the generally known poorer prognosis of women with ULBC.
KeywordsBreast cancer Ulcerated breast cancer Locally advanced breast cancer Prognostic factors
The authors want to thank Ms. Stefanie Mick for data input.
Conflicts of Interest
MKT, CS, and CFS participated in the design, conception, and interpretation of the study as well as proof read and drafted the manuscript.
CS and MKT wrote the manuscript.
CS, MKT, GD, MB, ZBH, and KP helped with data collection.
MS participated in the design of the study and performed the statistical analysis.
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