Purpose: To examine 10-year rates of local, regional, and distant recurrences, patterns of recurrence, and survival rates for breast cancer patients enrolled on Study NRG Oncology/Radiation Therapy Oncology Group 9517, a multi-institutional prospective trial that studied one of the earliest methods of accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI), multicatheter brachytherapy (MCT).
Methods and materials: Eligibility included stage I/II unifocal breast cancer <3 cm in size after lumpectomy with negative surgical margins and 0 to 3 positive axillary nodes without extracapsular extension. The APBI dose delivered was 34 Gy in 10 twice-daily fractions over 5 days for high-dose-rate (HDR); and 45 Gy in 3.5 to 5 days for low-dose-rate (LDR) brachytherapy. The primary endpoint was HDR and LDR MCT reproducibility. This analysis focuses on long-term ipsilateral breast recurrence (IBR), contralateral breast cancer events (CBE), regional recurrence (RR), and distant metastases (DM), disease-free, and overall survival.
Results: The median follow-up was 12.1 years. One hundred patients were accrued from 1997 to 2000; 98 were evaluable; 65 underwent HDR and 33 LDR MCT. Median age was 62 years; 88% had T1 tumors; 81% were pN0. Seventy-seven percent were estrogen receptor and/or progesterone receptor positive; 33% received adjuvant chemotherapy and 64% antiendocrine therapy. There have been 4 isolated IBRs and 1 IBR with RR, for 5.2% 10-year IBR without DM. There was 1 isolated RR, 1 with IBR, and 1 with a CBE, for 3.1% 10-year RR without DM. The 10-year CBE rate was 4.2%, with 5 total events. Eleven patients have developed DM, 8 have died of breast cancer, and 22 have died from other causes. The 10-year DFS and OS rates are 69.8% and 78.0%, respectively.
Conclusion: This multi-institutional, phase 2 trial studying MCT-APBI continues to report durable in-breast cancer control rates with long-term follow-up.
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