The use of postmastectomy radiation therapy (PMRT) has been recommended for patients with 4 or more positive lymph nodes, however, its role in patients with 1-3 positive lymph nodes remains unclear. The purpose of this study is to evaluate oncological outcomes for breast cancer patients with T1-2 tumors and 1-3 positive lymph nodes after undergoing PMRT. We performed a single-institution retrospective investigation that evaluated the association between PMRT and outcomes in breast cancer patients with T1-2 tumors and 1-3 positive lymph nodes, who underwent mastectomy from 2004 to 2015. Multivariable Cox proportional hazards regression was used to evaluate the association of PMRT with disease-free survival and overall survival. A total of 379 patients met inclusion criteria, of which 204 (54%) received PMRT while 175 (46%) did not receive PMRT following mastectomy and were followed over a median of 5.2 years (25th–75th percentile: 2.8–8.4 years). Recurrence was similar in patients receiving PMRT compared to those that did not: locoregional (0 vs 3, P = 0.061), distant (9 vs 3, P = 0.135) and any recurrence (11 vs 7, P = 0.525). After adjustment for potential confounding variables, PMRT was not associated with a statistically significant difference in disease-free survival (HR: 0.93; 95% CI: 0.48, 1.79) or overall survival (HR: 0.91; 95% CI: 0.45, 1.85). PMRT was not associated with improved oncological outcomes in patients with T1-2 breast cancer and 1-3 positive lymph nodes at our institution.
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