Estimating the benefits of therapy for early-stage breast cancer: The St. Gallen International Consensus Guidelines for the primary therapy of early breast cancer 2019

H. J. Burstein, G. Curigliano, S. Loibl, P. Dubsky, M. Gnant, P. Poortmans, M. Colleoni, C. Denkert, M. Piccart-Gebhart, M. Regan, H. J. Senn, E. P. Winer, B. Thurlimann

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

Abstract

Background: The 16th St. Gallen International Breast Cancer Conference 2019 in Vienna, Austria reviewed substantial new evidence on loco-regional and systemic therapies for early breast cancer. Design: Treatments were assessed in light of their intensity, duration and side-effects, estimating the magnitude of clinical benefit according to stage and biology of the disease. The Panel acknowledged that for many patients, the impact of adjuvant therapy or the adherence to specific guidelines may have modest impact on the risk of breast cancer recurrence or overall survival. For that reason, the Panel explicitly encouraged clinicians and patients to routinely discuss the magnitude of benefit for interventions as part of the development of the treatment plan. Results: The guidelines focus on common ductal and lobular breast cancer histologies arising in generally healthy women. Special breast cancer histologies may need different considerations, as do individual patients with other substantial health considerations. The panelists' opinions reflect different interpretation of available data and expert opinion where is lack of evidence and sociocultural factors in their environment such as availability of and access to medical service, economic resources and reimbursement issues. Panelists encourage patient participation in well-designed clinical studies whenever available. Conclusions: With these caveats in mind, the St. Gallen Consensus Conference seeks to provide guidance to clinicians on appropriate treatments for early-stage breast cancer and guidance for weighing the realistic tradeoffs between treatment and toxicity so that patients and clinical teams can make well-informed decisions on the basis of an honest reckoning of the magnitude of clinical benefit.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1541-1557
Number of pages17
JournalAnnals of Oncology
Volume30
Issue number10
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2019

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Keywords

  • early breast cancer
  • radiation therapy
  • St. Gallen Consensus
  • surgery
  • systemic adjuvant therapies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology

Cite this

Burstein, H. J., Curigliano, G., Loibl, S., Dubsky, P., Gnant, M., Poortmans, P., Colleoni, M., Denkert, C., Piccart-Gebhart, M., Regan, M., Senn, H. J., Winer, E. P., & Thurlimann, B. (2019). Estimating the benefits of therapy for early-stage breast cancer: The St. Gallen International Consensus Guidelines for the primary therapy of early breast cancer 2019. Annals of Oncology, 30(10), 1541-1557. https://doi.org/10.1093/annonc/mdz235