Partial breast reconstruction with reduction mammaplasty is an accepted option for women with breast cancer who wish to receive breast conserving therapy. With additional surgery and potential postoperative complications, the impact this approach has on the timely initiation of adjuvant radiation therapy has been raised as a concern. The purpose of this study was to determine if any postoperative complications after oncoplastic reduction (OCR) are associated with a delay in time to radiation.
All patients undergoing OCR with postoperative adjuvant radiation at a single institution between 1997 and 2015 were included in the analysis. Women who received adjuvant chemotherapy or experienced delays in radiation therapy due to nonsurgical reasons were excluded from our analysis. Comparisons were made between the time to radiation for patients with surgical complications and those without.
One hundred eighteen patients were included. Twenty-six (22.0%) experienced a surgical complication. Complications included cellulitis, delayed healing, seroma, wound breakdown, and wound dehiscence. Postoperative complications resulted in a significantly different median time interval for initiation of radiation (74 days vs 54 days, P < 0.001) compared to those without a complication. Among the entire cohort, 5% of patients required a second operative procedure due to complications. (n = 6/118 patients) including hematoma, infection, seroma, open wounds, wound dehiscence, and nipple necrosis. There was no difference in median time to radiation therapy in those with complications who returned to the operating room (73 days) compared to those who did not (74 days, P = 0.692).
Postoperative complications following OCR procedures were associated with an increased time to initiation of adjuvant radiation therapy regardless of whether or not the complication required reoperation. This needs to be taken into consideration when planning these combined procedures with every attempt made to minimize complications through patient selection and surgical technique.
From the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Surgery, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA.
Received March 12, 2018, and accepted for publication, after revision July 3, 2018.
Conflicts of interest and sources of funding: none declared.
Reprints: Albert Losken, MD, Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Surgery, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA 30308. E-mail: email@example.com.