Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"
My oncologist once mentioned that roughly 75% of breast cancer recurrences are metastatic. If this is true, most patients who recur would eventually die after a recurrence. I can't find any substantiation for his remark. Can you tell me whether he is right or not? I am trying to decide whether or not to continue an aromatase inhibitor.
Kevin R. Fox, MD, Assistant Director, Clinical Affairs and Associate Professor of Hematology/Oncology at the Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania, responds:
Unfortunately, it IS true...of all breast cancer recurrences, 75% or so are metastatic, and about 25% are "local"-only recurrences, meaning they care confined to just the breast region. Metastatic breast cancer carries a median life expectancy of about 2.5 to 3 years. If a patient is taking an aromatase inhibitor to prevent recurrence, I would recommend that she continue.
Feb 17, 2014 - Positive margins (ink on invasive carcinoma or ductal carcinoma in situ) are associated with increased risk of ipsilateral breast tumor recurrence, according to consensus guidelines published online Feb. 10 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
Apr 23, 2014