Breast-conserving therapy (BCT) represents the standard care in the management of early-stage breast cancer, because long-term outcomes with breast conservation are comparable with those of mastectomy. Adjuvant radiation therapy remains an essential component of BCT with standard techniques requiring 5-6 weeks. Accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI) is a technique developed over the past two decades that enables completion of treatment in one week or less. Review of the expanding literature reveals increasing support for APBI using several techniques, including interstitial brachytherapy, balloon-based brachytherapy, and external beam therapy. Novel treatment strategies, including intraoperative radiation therapy, hypofractionated APBI, and proton therapy, require further results before definitive conclusions can be made. Although there is currently a lack of level I evidence, with the pending publication of multiple phase III trials comparing whole-breast irradiation and APBI, modern treatment incorporating APBI should soon be developed.
- Accelerated partial breast irradiation
- Breast cancer
- Breast conserving therapy
- Early-stage breast cancer
- Local-regional evaluation and therapy
- Radiation therapy
- Three-dimensional conformal radiotherapy