Tools for Contralateral Prophylactic Mastectomy Decision Making

Mitchell H. Gail, Ismail Jatoi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


PURPOSE: Women with unilateral breast cancer are increasingly opting for the removal of not only the involved breast, but also for the removal of the opposite uninvolved breast (contralateral prophylactic mastectomy [CPM]), although the risk of contralateral breast cancer (CBC) has decreased in recent years. Models to predict the absolute risk of CBC can help a woman decide whether to undergo CPM. Our objective is to illustrate that a better decision can be made if the patient and doctor also have estimates of the absolute risks of regional and distant recurrences and mortality from non-breast cancer causes. MATERIALS AND METHODS: We based our analyses on two published models for CBC and published information on the hazards of regional and distant recurrences and non-breast cancer mortality. Assuming that CPM eliminates CBC but has no effect on other events, we calculated how much CPM reduces a woman's CBC risk and total risk from all these events for 10 hypothetical women with various subtypes of breast cancer and risk factors. RESULTS: The risk of CBC and total risk vary greatly, depending on the breast cancer subtype. In some cases, a decision for or against CPM can be based on CBC risk alone, but in others, additional consideration of total risk may cause a woman to decline CPM. CONCLUSION: There is a potential to develop more informative tools for deciding on CPM. Realizing this potential will require more and better data to validate existing models of absolute CBC risk and to characterize the hazards of regional and distant recurrences and deaths from non-breast cancer causes for women with various subtypes of breast cancers and risk factors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3653-3659
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of clinical oncology : official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology
Issue number31
StatePublished - Nov 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


Dive into the research topics of 'Tools for Contralateral Prophylactic Mastectomy Decision Making'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this