The study out of MD Anderson reporting ‘double the mastectomy rate’ for patients treated with accelerated partial breast irradiation compared to whole breast irradiation, has created a tremendous amount of angst in the lay and medical press. Studies such as these that rely on large retrospective databases can provide interesting data although it all depends on the quality of data entered and how it is extracted.
As co-principle investigator of The American Society of Breast Surgeons (ASBS) Mammosite Registry we have prospectively followed patients and retrospectively analyzed the data. However, we have not seen the same high complication or mastectomy rates as this study reported.
Perhaps the MDAnderson study speaks to patients being cared for by breast cancer specialists with our low complication/recurrence rates.