At 8 years, DMFI rates were 94.8% [95% confidence interval (CI) 92.7% to 96.9%] in 509 patients receiving no AST, and 97.3% (95% CI 95.8% to 98.8%) in 509 matched patients who received only ET [absolute difference: 2.5%, HR 0.56 (95% CI 0.30-1.03)]. No statistically significant difference was seen in 8-year OS rates, 95.4% (95% CI 93.5% to 97.4%) in patients receiving no AST and 95.6% (95% CI 93.8% to 97.5%) in patients receiving only ET [absolute difference: 0.2%, HR 0.86 (95% CI 0.53-1.41)]. Cumulative incidence rates of LRR and CBC were 4.7% (95% CI 3.0% to 7.0%) and 4.6% (95% CI 2.9% to 6.9%) in patients receiving no AST versus 1.4% (95% CI 0.6% to 2.9%) and 1.5% (95% CI 0.6% to 3.1%) in patients receiving only ET.
In patients with stage I low-risk breast cancer, the effect of ET on DMFI was limited, but overall significantly fewer breast cancer events were observed in patients who received ET, after the relatively short follow-up of 8 years. These benefits and side-effects of ET should be discussed with all patients, even those at a very low risk of distant metastasis.
Adjuvant systemic treatments (AST) reduce mortality, but have associated short- and long-term toxicities. Careful selection of patients likely to benefit from AST is needed. We evaluated outcome of low-risk breast cancer patients of the EORTC 10041/BIG 3-04 MINDACT trial who received no AST.
Patients with estrogen receptor-positive, HER2-negative, lymph node-negative tumors ≤2 cm who received no AST were matched 1 : 1 to patients with similar tumor characteristics treated with adjuvant endocrine therapy (ET), using propensity score matching and exact matching on age, genomic risk (70-gene signature) and grade. In a post hoc analysis, distant metastasis-free interval (DMFI) and overall survival (OS) were assessed by Kaplan-Meier analysis and hazard ratios (HR) by Cox regression. Cumulative incidences of locoregional recurrence (LRR) and contralateral breast cancer (CBC) were assessed with competing risk analyses.