This study aimed to investigate the clinicopathological features and prognosis of operable breast cancers in young and elderly Chinese women.
Patients and Methods
This study included 209 patients aged ≤35 years and 213 patients aged ≥60 but <70 years, who received treatment between January 2000 and December 2004. The clinicopathological features, molecular subtypes, therapeutic strategies, and prognosis were evaluated.
Tumor size was of significant difference between the 2 groups (p = 0.018), with more T2 and T3 tumors in the young group and more lymph node involvement in young patients with stage T1 tumors (p = 0.033). There were more triple-negative and less luminal A tumors in the young group (p = 0.018). 47.1% of tumors were not detected by mammography in the young group as compared to 5.5% in the elderly group (p < 0.001). More patients received chemotherapy in the young group (p < 0.001) and preferred breast-conserving surgery (p = 0.031). The 6-year disease-free survival (DFS) was 80 and 66% in the elderly and the young group, respectively (p = 0.001), but no difference was seen in overall survival.
Compared with elderly women, young breast cancer patients have different clinicopathological features and molecular subtypes, and poorer DFS. Furthermore, the insidious onset of breast cancer in young women suggests that clinicians should pay more attention to young women with breast abnormalities.