Background: Differences in patient characteristics and decision-making preferences have been described between those who elect breast-conserving surgery (BCS), unilateral mastectomy (UM), or contralateral prophylactic mastectomy (CPM) for breast cancer. However, it is not known whether preferred and actual decision-making roles differ across these surgery types, or whether surgery choice reflects a woman’s goals or achieves desired outcomes. Methods: Women diagnosed with stage 0–III unilateral breast cancer across eight large medical centers responded to a mailed questionnaire regarding treatment decision-making goals, roles, and outcomes. These data were linked to electronic medical records. Differences were assessed using descriptive analyses and logistic regression. Results: There were 750 study participants: 60.1% BCS, 17.9% UM, and 22.0% CPM. On multivariate analysis, reducing worry about recurrence was a more important goal for surgery in the CPM group than the others. Although women’s preferred role in the treatment decision did not differ by surgery, the CPM group was more likely to report taking a more-active-than-preferred role than the BCS group. On multivariate analysis that included receipt of additional surgery, posttreatment worry about both ipsilateral and contralateral recurrence was higher in the BCS group than the CPM group (both p < 0.001). The UM group was more worried than the CPM group about contralateral recurrence only (p < 0.001). Conclusions: Women with CPM were more likely to report being able to reduce worry about recurrence as a very important goal for surgery. They were also the least worried about ipsilateral breast recurrence and contralateral breast cancer almost two years postdiagnosis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas