alexa Prognosis in women with breast cancer and private extra insurance coverage.


Journal of Cancer Diagnosis

Author(s): Juan J Grau, Gabriel Zanon, Carlos Caso, Xavier Gonzalez, Araceli Rodriguez

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Background: Many women covered by the Spanish public health system also have an extra private insurance policy for gynecological examinations and routine annual mammography. We retrospectively analyzed the long-term survival rates in these patients when diagnosed with breast cancer.

Methods: We analyzed the survival and prognostic factors in patients diagnosed with breast cancer who were referred to a medical oncology unit for multidisciplinary treatment covered by private health insurance.

Results: Between 1994 and 2009, a total of 434 patients with breast tumor were analyzed: 33 in situ and 401 infiltrating. Among the infiltrating carcinomas, 38 were stage IV and 363 were stage I, II, or III. With a median follow-up of 62 months, the 5-year global survival rate was 91 %: 97 % for stage I, 94 % for stage II, and 77 % for stage III tumors. In the patients diagnosed by routine mammography, the 5-year survival rate was 96 %, compared with 86 % in those consulting their gynecologist after breast self-examination or for other symptoms (p = 0.0159). Seventy-four percent were treated conservatively and experienced better survival than the 26 % who underwent mastectomy (p = 0.0024). Patients with disease with positive hormone receptors had a better survival rate (p = 0.0264); hormone receptor status was the only independent prognostic factor in the Cox multivariate analysis. Postmenopausal patients who received adjuvant tamoxifen plus exemestane had a better prognosis than those who received tamoxifen alone (p = 0.0203).

Conclusions: Long-term survival rate was high in breast cancer patients with extra private insurance coverage. This is probably because disease was diagnosed at an early stage.

This article was published in Annals of Surgical Oncology and referenced in Journal of Cancer Diagnosis

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