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Endocrine Therapy Initiation among Older Women with Ductal Carcinoma In Situ. J Cancer Epidemiol 2017;2017:6091709



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BACKGROUND: Although treatment of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) is controversial, national guidelines recommend considering endocrine therapy for women with estrogen receptor- (ER-) positive DCIS or those undergoing breast conserving surgery (BCS) without radiation. We evaluated uptake and predictors of endocrine therapy use among older women with DCIS.

METHODS: In the SEER-Medicare database, we identified women aged 65+ years diagnosed with DCIS during 2007-2011. We evaluated demographic, tumor, and treatment characteristics associated with endocrine therapy initiation.

RESULTS: Among 2,945 women with DCIS, 41% initiated endocrine therapy (66% tamoxifen, 34% aromatase inhibitors). Initiation was more common among women with ER-positive than ER-negative DCIS (48% versus 16%; HR = 3.75, 95% CI: 2.91-4.83); 28% of women with unknown ER status initiated endocrine therapy. Initiation was less common after BCS alone compared to BCS with radiation (32% versus 50%; HR = 0.69, 95% CI: 0.59-0.80).

CONCLUSIONS: Less than half of older women with DCIS initiate endocrine therapy to prevent second breast cancers. Our findings suggest use was more common, but not exclusive, among women with ER-positive DCIS, but not among women who underwent BCS alone. Endocrine therapy should be targeted toward patients most likely to benefit from its use.

Author List

Anderson C, Winn AN, Dusetzina SB, Nichols HB


Aaron Winn PhD Assistant Professor in the School of Pharmacy Administration department at Medical College of Wisconsin

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