Breast Reconstruction in the Setting of Stage 4 Breast Cancer: Is It Worthwhile?

Malke Asaad, Jesse Meaike, Jennifer Yonkus, Tanya Hoskin, Tina Hieken, Jorys Martinez-Jorge, Nho Tran, Minh Doan Nguyen, Judy Boughey, Amy C. Degnim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Background: The role of reconstruction after primary tumor surgery for metastatic breast cancer remains controversial. This report describes the outcomes for patients undergoing mastectomy with and without reconstruction in the setting of de novo stage 4 breast cancer. Methods: Using a prospectively maintained institutional breast surgery database, this study identified all patients who presented with de novo stage 4 breast cancer from January 2008 to December 2018. Patients were included if they had undergone mastectomy with or without reconstruction. Patient, surgical characteristics, and survival outcomes were abstracted and analyzed. Results: The study identified 29 patients: 8 patients (28%) who underwent reconstruction (R) and 21 patients (72%) who did not (NR). Complete clinical response to induction systemic therapy was more frequent among patients in the R group than among those in the NR group for the primary disease (50% in R, 5% in NR), and to a lesser degree for distant disease (63% in R, 39% in NR). No difference in complication rates between the two groups was identified [n = 1 (13%) in R; n = 2 (10%) in NR; p = 1.0]. Overall survival from surgery was longer in the R group (100% at 2 and 5 years) than in the NR group [85%; 95% confidence interval (CI), 68–100% at 2 years vs 50%; 95% CI 27–91% at 5 years] (p = 0.046). Conclusion: Breast reconstruction after mastectomy may be reasonable to consider for appropriately selected patients with de novo stage 4 breast cancer who have excellent responses to systemic therapy and anticipated durable survival.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4730-4739
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of surgical oncology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Oncology


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