Articles

BREAST EDEMA AFTER CONSERVATIVE SURGERY FOR EARLY-STAGE BREAST CANCER: A RETROSPECTIVE SINGLE-CENTER ASSESSMENT OF RISK FACTORS

Authors
  • C. Cornacchia
  • S. Dessalvi
  • G. Santori
  • F. Canobbio
  • G. Atzori
  • F. De Paoli
  • R. Diaz
  • S. Franchelli
  • M. Gipponi
  • F. Murelli
  • M. Sparavigna
  • F. Pitto
  • A. Fozza
  • F. Boccardo
  • D. Friedman
  • P. Fregatti

Abstract

Breast-conserving surgery (BCS) is the standard of care for early-stage breast cancer. We retrospectively enrolled 530 patients (mean age: 62.96 ± 12.69 years) undergoing BCS between January 1, 2018, and December 31, 2019. During the COVID-19 pandemic, all patients with at least 1 year of follow-up were telephonically asked after surgery to provide clinical signs and symptoms attributable to postoperative breast cancer-related lymphedema of the breast (BCRL-B). Thirty-one (5.8%) patients reported breast edema and were visited to measure the tissue dielectric constant (TDC) and to assess the induration of the skin. There was a difference seen in treatment with lumpectomy + ALND performed more frequently in patients with (29%) than without (12%) BCRL-B. In the subgroup of patients with BCRL-B (n=31), significantly higher values of local total water were calculated in the nine patients who underwent Lump + ALND procedure (1.86 ± 0.48 vs. 1.48 ± 0.38; p = 0.046). Among patients with BCRL-B (n=31), in eight patients (25.8%) tissue induration measured with SkinFibroMeter was >0.100 N, thus suggesting tissue fibrosis. Cumulative survival probability at 1-year after surgery was 0.992. No statistical differences in 1-year survival after surgery were found for type of surgery (p = 0.890) or absence/presence of BCRL-B (p = 0.480). In univariate logistic regression, only lumpectomy + ALND surgery (p = 0.009) and any subsequent axillary lymph node removal surgery (p = 0.003) were associated with BCRL-B. Both of these variables were also found to be statistically significant in the multivariate regression model. Further prospective research is warranted to analyze potentential predictors of BCRL-B and to reduce/ prevent this complication.

Keywords: breast edema, lymphedema, breast-conserving surgery, breast-conserving surgery, breast cancer

How to Cite:

Cornacchia, C., Dessalvi, S., Santori, G., Canobbio, F., Atzori, G., De Paoli, F., Diaz, R., Franchelli, S., Gipponi, M., Murelli, F., Sparavigna, M., Pitto, F., Fozza, A., Boccardo, F., Friedman, D. & Fregatti, P., (2023) “BREAST EDEMA AFTER CONSERVATIVE SURGERY FOR EARLY-STAGE BREAST CANCER: A RETROSPECTIVE SINGLE-CENTER ASSESSMENT OF RISK FACTORS”, Lymphology 55(4), 167-177. doi: https://doi.org/10.2458/lymph.5738

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Published on
07 Aug 2023
Peer Reviewed