Study Assesses Reoperation Rate After Breast-conserving Surgery

Nearly 25% of women with early stage breast cancer who underwent breast conservation surgery (BCS) underwent a reoperation within 90 days of surgery across New York State from 2011 to 2013, compared with approximately 40% from 2003 to 2004, a study published in JAMA Surgery has shown.1

For the study, researchers sought to investigate the use of BCS in New York State and to determine rates of reoperation, procedure choice, and the impact of surgeon experience on the likelihood of a reoperation within 90 days of BCS.

Researchers analyzed data from 89 448 women with early stage breast cancer who underwent primary BCS, a conservative strategy that involves removing the tumor and a margin of surrounding breast tissue, between 2003 and 2013 at various centers in New York.

There was a reduction in BCS overall from 2003 to 2013, especially in women younger than 50 years, but minimal change in those age 50 to 64 years and those 65 years or older.

Results showed that the average overall rate of 90-day reoperation was 30.9%, which decreased over time from 39.5% in 2003 to 2004 to 23.1% in 2011 to 2013. Researchers found that reoperation rates were highest in women age 20 to 49 years and lowest in women 65 years or older (Ptrend<.001).

The study also demonstrated that reoperation rates varied significantly by surgeon. Specifically, 90-day reoperation rates were 35.2%, 29.6%, and 27.5% among low-volume, middle-volume, and high-volume surgeons, respectively, corresponding to a 33% lower risk for reoperation if BCS was performed by a high-volume surgeon.


1. Isaacs AJ, Gemignani ML, Pusic A, Sedrakyan A. Association of breast conservation surgery for cancer with 90-day reoperation rates in New York state [published online ahead of print February 17, 2016]. JAMA Oncol. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2015.5535.

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