Subclavicular recurrence of breast cancer: Does surgery play a role?

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Occasionally, breast cancer relapses in the subclavicular region. In patients with failed multimodal treatment, or in those who develop an isolated recurrence, surgical resection may be useful to remove all macroscopically evident diseases. However, the procedure may be technically demanding and there are no published data regarding its benefits. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the feasibility and safety of subclavicular resection in breast cancer and provide indications as to whether it can contribute to disease control. We used a transpectoral approach to surgically remove isolated breast cancer recurrence in the subclavicular region in seven consecutive patients presenting over 2 years; in the eighth case a transmanubrial approach was necessary. We found that the surgical approach proposed is feasible and safe, with a 75% rate of complete resection; however, the series was characterised by a high rate of local and distant relapse. We conclude that the technique may be useful, in selected cases, for palliation only.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)649-653
Number of pages5
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2006


  • Breast cancer recurrence
  • Lymph node metastasis
  • Surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology


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