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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 159

of 'Breast conserving therapy'

Physician sex and other factors associated with type of breast cancer surgery in older women.
Cyran EM, Crane LA, Palmer L
Arch Surg. 2001;136(2):185.
HYPOTHESIS: Physician-related factors as well as patient characteristics may explain why women aged 65 years or older with early-stage breast cancer undergo lumpectomy less often than younger women, despite National Institutes of Health recommendations favoring lumpectomy over mastectomy.
DESIGN: A descriptive and analytical retrospective computer-assisted telephone survey.
SETTING: A population-based random sample of breast cancer survivors in Colorado, identified from the Colorado Central Cancer Registry.
PATIENTS: Women aged 65 to 84 years when diagnosed as having stage I or II breast cancer, treated 1 to 6 years previously with mastectomy or lumpectomy, and without recurrence or second primary cancers. Among women contacted, 58% participated. Results of 198 interviews are reported.
METHODS: Survey questionsincluded patient decision-making participation and physician recommendations, sources and amount of treatment information provided by physicians, physician characteristics, and patient surgery preferences and demographic characteristics. A multivariate logistic regression model identified factors independently associated with lumpectomy.
RESULTS: Lumpectomy was strongly associated with higher patient education, female physician sex, patient age 75 years or older, and amount of physician-provided information. The number of physician-provided information sources was associated with surgery explanations, and female physicians provided more sources of information. A physician decision or recommendation for surgery type was reported by 61% of women, of whom 93% underwent the recommended procedure. A subset of patients (13%) reported deferring the surgery decision to someone else.
CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that better-educated and better-informed older women are more likely to undergo lumpectomy, and that physicians may influence breast cancer patients' decisions about surgery type.
Division of General Internal Medicine, Campus Box B-212, University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, 4200 E Ninth Ave, Denver, CO 80262, USA. Lisa.Cyran@UCHSC.edu