Male breast cancer: a 30 year retrospective analysis from a tertiary cancer care centre

18 May 2023
Abhishek Soni, Yashpal Verma, Ashok Chauhan, Paramjeet Kaur, Vivek Kaushal, Diptajit Paul

Background: Male breast cancer (MBC) is one of the rare malignancies that account for less than 1% of all malignancies in males. However, the clinicopathological characteristics of MBC are not entirely similar to female breast cancer; but still, it is treated in line with the female breast cancer protocols.

Aims: To retrospectively analyse trends in MBC as to its distribution, presentation, treatment, and outcome.

Material and method: A total of 106 patients with MBC from 1991 to 2020 were analysed retrospectively. Frequency distribution analysis of the demographic and clinicopathological data and treatment variables was done.

Results: Median age of presentation was 57 years; ranging from 30 to 86 years. Either of the sides was almost equally affected with an R: L ratio of 1.2:1. The average duration of complaint was 26.2 months (range 1–240 months). History of gynaecomastia was noted in 18 patients, significant benign prostate hypertrophy in 13, and hypertension needing medical treatment in 14 patients. The majority of the patients were smokers (72/106) and alcoholics (43/106). Five patients reported positive family history. 21 patients had metastatic disease at presentation and received palliative treatment. Stage II was seen in 36.8%, stage III in 43.4%, and stage IV in 19.8% of patients. Node positives were 63.2%. Pathology was invariably (90.5%) infiltrative ductal carcinoma. Radiation was administered in 85.8% of the patients, chemotherapy in 72.6% of patients, and hormonal treatment was given in 47.2% of patients. The median overall survival (OS) was 78 months. OS at 5 and 10 years was 78% and 58% respectively.

Conclusion: Despite the possibility of MBC being apparent at an early stage, patients present with locally advanced disease. Radical surgery with adjuvant/neoadjuvant chemotherapy and adjuvant radiotherapy remains the gold standard. Cancer education campaigns must be run to catch the early disease and to radically treat the disease.

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