Hazard rates of recurrence following diagnosis of primary breast cancer

Ismail Jatoi, Anna Tsimelzon, Heidi Weiss, Gary M. Clark, Susan G. Hilsenbeck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Scopus citations


We calculated hazard rates for recurrence in patients with primary breast cancer (stage I, II; no adjuvant therapy). Previous publications have indicated a peak in hazard rates for recurrence (or death) at approximately 2-3 years after diagnosis of primary breast cancer. However, there have been conflicting reports concerning the presence of a second peak at 5-7 years after diagnosis. In this study, we estimated hazard functions by the Nelson-Aalen method and fit by cubic-linear and cubic-cubic-linear models to test for the presence of one or two peaks, respectively. We identified two peaks in hazard of recurrence, one at 2 years and another at 5 years. The 5-year peak, though statistically significant, represents very small differences in patient outcome. This additional peak may be an artifact of interval censoring due to a tendency to follow-up patients at specific bench-mark time points.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)173-178
Number of pages6
JournalBreast Cancer Research and Treatment
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Hazard functions
  • Hazard rates
  • Recurrence
  • Survival

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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