Postmastectomy Chest Wall Radiation to a Temporary Tissue Expander or Permanent Breast Implant-Is There a Difference in Complication Rates?

Penny R. Anderson, Gary Freedman, Nicos Nicolaou, Navesh Sharma, Tianyu Li, Neal Topham, Monica Morrow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

58 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the likelihood of complications and cosmetic results among breast cancer patients who underwent modified radical mastectomy (MRM) and breast reconstruction followed by radiation therapy (RT) to either a temporary tissue expander (TTE) or permanent breast implant (PI). Methods and Materials: Records were reviewed of 74 patients with breast cancer who underwent MRM followed by breast reconstruction and RT. Reconstruction consisted of a TTE usually followed by exchange to a PI. RT was delivered to the TTE in 62 patients and to the PI in 12 patients. Dose to the reconstructed chest wall was 50 Gy. Median follow-up was 48 months. The primary end point was the incidence of complications involving the reconstruction. Results: There was no significant difference in the rate of major complications in the PI group (0%) vs. 4.8% in the TTE group. No patients lost the reconstruction in the PI group. Three patients lost the reconstruction in the TTE group. There were excellent/good cosmetic scores in 90% of the TTE group and 80% of the PI group (p = 0.22). On multivariate regression models, the type of reconstruction irradiated had no statistically significant impact on complication rates. Conclusions: Patients treated with breast reconstruction and RT can experience low rates of major complications. We demonstrate no significant difference in the overall rate of major or minor complications between the TTE and PI groups. Postmastectomy RT to either the TTE or the PI should be considered as acceptable treatment options in all eligible patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)81-85
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics
Volume74
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Radiation
  • Oncology
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Cancer Research

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