The Contralateral Breast: Bilateral Primary Breast Cancer
One of the most interesting phenomena in breast cancer is its bilaterality, which not only reveals the biologic nature and natural history of the disease, but is especially important because it allows the possibility of early detection of breast cancer in a high-risk population to be assessed. Although Foote and Stewart  had already defined patients with the greatest risk of breast cancer as those with a past history of the disease, interest in bilateral breast cancer was mainly stimulated by the investigative results of Urban. Recently Veronesi et al.  observed, in his study of conservative treatment for breast cancer, that 15 contralateral — and only 7 new ipsilateral — primary cancers arose. It is very interesting to consider the role of adjuvant prophylactic radiotherapy in preventing new primary contralateral tumors. Should the contralateral breast also be treated with radiotherapy? In fact, the difficulty of selecting patients at risk has led some authors to conclude that prophylactic mastectomy of the contralateral breast is sometimes justifiable . It is, however, not certain that every breast cancer patient has, or will develop, a second primary in the contralateral breast.
KeywordsBreast Cancer Contralateral Breast Contralateral Breast Cancer Prophylactic Mastectomy Bilateral Breast Cancer
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