Predictors of delayed breast reconstruction in the Netherlands: a 5-year follow-up study in stage I–III breast cancer patients

L. S.E. van Egdom*, K. M. de Ligt, L. de Munck, L. B. Koppert, M. A.M. Mureau, H. A. Rakhorst, S. Siesling

*Corresponding author for this work

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Purpose: Delayed breast reconstruction (DBR) is a valid option for postmastectomy breast cancer patients who have a desire for breast reconstruction but are not considered suitable for immediate breast reconstruction (IBR). The objective of this study was to investigate the clinical practice and predictors of the use of DBR in the Netherlands. 

Methods: Stage I–III breast cancer patients diagnosed from January to March 2012 and treated with mastectomy were selected from the Netherlands Cancer Registry. Routinely collected patient, tumor, treatment and hospital characteristics were complemented with data about DBR up to 2018. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were performed to identify factors independently associated with postmastectomy DBR. Factors associated with time to DBR were identified through Cox regression analyses. 

Results: Of all patients who underwent mastectomy (n = 1,415), 10.2% underwent DBR. DBR patients more often received autologous reconstruction compared to IBR patients (37.5% vs 6.2%, p < 0.001). Age below 50 years (age < 35 OR 15.55, age 35–49 OR 4.18) and neoadjuvant and adjuvant chemotherapy (OR 2.59 and OR 2.83, respectively) were significantly associated with DBR. Mean time to DBR was 2.4 years [range 1–6 years]. Time to DBR was significantly associated with age < 35 years (HR 2.22), and a high hospital volume (HR 1.87). 

Discussion: The use of DBR after mastectomy could not be fully explained by age below 50 years, chemotherapy, and hospital volume. Treatment with radiotherapy and adjuvant chemotherapy increased time to DBR. More information about patient preferences is needed to understand the use and timing of reconstruction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)324-335
Number of pages12
JournalBreast Cancer
Issue number2
Early online date15 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2022

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Publisher Copyright: © 2021, The Author(s).


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