Survival of breast-cancer patients and body size indicators

Int J Cancer. 1990 Nov 15;46(5):824-31. doi: 10.1002/ijc.2910460513.


The association of breast-cancer survival with various risk factors was investigated using data of 213 breast-cancer patients who underwent surgical operation between 1975 and 1978. They were followed-up until 1987, and a total of 64 deaths including 47 breast-cancer deaths were certified. The 5-year and 10-year relative survival rates were 78.5% and 75.3% respectively. Of the various factors investigated, some anthropometric indicators revealed interesting results; i.e., body weight, Quetelet index, and body surface area at the time of operation turned out to be strong predictors of survival with a statistically significant trend towards lower survival with larger body structure even after adjustment for confounding factors (e.g., clinical stage) using a proportional-hazard model. The estimated survival probability for women with Quetelet index of 20 was about 12% higher than that with Quetelet index of 24 over a 10-year or more follow-up period. Other variables exhibiting prognostic importance were clinical stage, TNM classification, and some histological findings, while height and reproductive life indicators were, as a rule, not significantly related to survival.

MeSH terms

  • Body Height / physiology
  • Body Surface Area
  • Body Weight / physiology*
  • Breast Neoplasms / complications
  • Breast Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Lymphatic Metastasis
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Obesity / complications*
  • Prognosis
  • Proportional Hazards Models