Article Abstract

Assessment of breast symmetry in breast cancer patients undergoing therapeutic mammaplasty using the Breast Cancer Conservation Therapy cosmetic results software (BCCT.core)

Authors: Reuben Vella Baldacchino, Annalise Bellizzi, Rudo N. Madada-Nyakauru, Fawz Kazzazi, Georgette Oni, Parto Forouhi, Charles M. Malata

Abstract

Background: Therapeutic mammaplasty (TM) is a standard oncoplastic technique utilising aesthetic breast reduction principles to facilitate tumour resection and breast reshaping. Simultaneous contralateral mammaplasties are often performed to maintain symmetry. BCCT.core software, which principally assesses breast symmetry, has been previously employed for evaluating cosmetic results after standard breast conservation therapy and latterly TMs for upper pole tumours. The purpose of this study was to validate this novel tool for TMs in all breast zones.
Methods: Standardised photographs of 20 consecutive patients who underwent TM were evaluated for symmetry using BCCT.core versus a plastic surgical panel completing a visual analogue scale. Results were rated as (excellent/good/fair/poor). Outcomes between the two methods were compared.
Results: Twenty patients aged 37 to 63 years with a median 36G bra size had 22 TMs (18 unilateral, 2 bilateral). Indications were invasive breast cancer (87%) and ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) (13%). The median (range) tumour size was 22.5 mm (6–90 mm) with a resection weight of 245.8 g (16-1,079 g). Primary nipple pedicles were superomedial (63%), inferior (21%) and superolateral (16%). Five patients required a secondary glandular pedicle for volume redistribution to maintain breast shape. The BCCT.core software vs. panel symmetry assessments were 37% vs. 39% (excellent), 63% vs. 50% (good) and 0% vs. 11% (fair). Wilcoxon matched-pairs sign rank tests and Spearman rank correlations found the pairings to be statistically significant (P<0.05).
Conclusions: Despite small patient numbers, BCCT.core gave comparable findings with the panel and is thus useful for objectively assessing cosmesis of TMs in all breast zones.

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