June 23, 2021 11:00 AM

Chemotherapy does not affect complication rate or patient satisfaction for breast reconstruction

Among those who underwent a mastectomy and breast reconstruction, there were no significant differences in complication rate or patient well-being for women who received chemotherapy as an additional treatment compared to those who did not.

chemo medicine bags hanging on IV pole with lab note badge in yellow in background
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Receiving chemotherapy as additional treatment for breast cancer did not increase the complication rate for women who underwent a mastectomy and a breast reconstruction as part of the same operation, University of Michigan researchers found.

Chemotherapy didn’t affect the patients’ well-being or their level of satisfaction with the procedure either.

The Mastectomy Reconstruction Outcomes Consortium Study is the first to examine this topic in a large number of patients at multiple health centers.

“One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer during her lifetime, and the number of women undergoing mastectomy for breast cancer has increased over time,” said Sarah E. Hart, M.D., the first author of the study and a plastic surgery resident at Michigan Medicine, the academic medical center of the University of Michigan. “The information from this study can assist patients and providers in informed decision making for breast reconstruction in the setting of chemotherapy.”

Previous research led by Michigan Medicine has shown that radiation after breast reconstruction is linked to both higher complication rates and lower patient satisfaction.

Paper cited/DOI: “Impact of Chemotherapy on Clinical Complications and Patient-reported Outcomes after 1 Immediate Breast Reconstruction,” JAMA Surgery.