J Korean Surg Soc. 2003 Jan;64(1):20-27. Korean. Original Article.
Department of Surgery, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. email@example.com
PURPOSE: It has been known that the prognosis of a young woman's breast cancer is poorer than the other woman. However, the effect of age on the prognosis is not well- defined. We performed this study to investigate age as a prognostic factor of breast cancer. METHODS: A retrospective study was conducted of 1782 breast cancer patients who underwent operations in Department of Surgery, Seoul National University Hospital between January 1981 and December 2000. The patients were divided into two groups: young age (35) groups. Tumor stage, histopathological characteristics (such as histology, nuclear grade, histologic grade, hormonal receptor, etc), overall survival and disease free survival rates were compared between the two groups. RESULTS: The ages ranged from 17 to 88 years. 306 patients (17.3%) were included in the young age group (median age=32 years) and 1, 476 (82.7%) in the old age group (median age=47 years). The median follow-up period was 42 and 51 months in young and old age groups, respectively. Histologically, a medullary carcinoma was more common in the young age group (P=0.000), and a papillary carcinoma in the old age group (P<0.05). Statically, the young age group had more advanced TMN stages (P= 0.033). From log-rank tests, the young age group had poorer overall survival and disease free survival rates (P<0.05, P=0.0002). However, in multivariate analysis, only N stage was a significant independent prognostic factor (P=0.009). CONCLUSION: Our study showed that the young aged patients had a poorer survival rate, but age was not an independent prognostic factor.