Brachytherapy-based partial breast irradiation is associated with low rates of complications and excellent cosmesis

Chirag Shah, Shariq Khwaja, Shahed Badiyan, J. Ben Wilkinson, Frank A. Vicini, Peter Beitsch, Martin Keisch, Douglas Arthur, Maureen Lyden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Background: Recent retrospective, claims-based analyses have suggested a potential increased rate of toxicities associated with brachytherapy-based accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI). The purpose of this analysis was to examine cosmesis and toxicity data from the prospective American Society of Breast Surgeons (ASBS) breast brachytherapy registry trial to compare to the findings from the claims analyses. Methods: The ASBS breast brachytherapy registry is a prospective nonblinded multi-institutional registry trial. Patients with Stage 0-II breast cancer undergoing breast conserving therapy were eligible. A total of 1665 patients were enrolled and 1449 treated between 2002 and 2004 with a median followup of 63 months. All patients were treated with the MammoSite (Hologic, Inc.) single-lumen device to deliver adjuvant APBI (34. Gy in 3.4. Gy fractions). Results: The rate of excellent/good cosmesis was 90.6% at 84 months. The rate of a complication (symptomatic seroma, infection, fat necrosis, telangiectasias) at 1 year/any time point was 24.2%/38.5%, whereas the rate of noninfectious complications at 1 year/any time point was 14.8%/28.9%. The rate of symptomatic seroma, fat necrosis, infection, and telangiectasia at any time was 13.4%, 2.5%, 9.6%, and 13.0%, respectively. Conclusions: The final toxicity analysis from ASBS breast brachytherapy registry trial confirms the previously noted excellent cosmesis and toxicity profiles and fails to confirm retrospective claims analyses that have suggested higher rates of toxicity for brachytherapy-based APBI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)278-284
Number of pages7
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Brachytherapy
  • Breast cancer
  • Partial breast irradiation
  • Radiation therapy
  • Toxicity


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