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Characteristics, treatment and outcomes of HER2 positive male breast cancer

Published:December 09, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amjsurg.2022.12.009

      Highlights

      • 13% of men diagnosed with breast cancer are HER2 positive.
      • Men diagnosed with HER2 positive breast cancer had higher cancer-related mortality.
      • Men diagnosed with HER2 positive breast cancer had shorter overall survival.
      • Men diagnosed with HER2 positive breast cancer had a larger mean tumor size.

      Abstract

      Background

      Research describing male breast cancer with HER2 overexpression is limited. This study evaluated the characteristics, treatment, and outcomes of HER2 positive breast cancer in men.

      Methods

      Information for January 2010 through December 2017 was obtained from the SEER Research Plus database.

      Results

      Four hundred sixty-two men were HER2 positive (13%) of 3594 cases of breast cancer. Compared to HER2 negative patients, these patients were younger at diagnosis (63 vs. 67 years, p < 0.001), had more poorly differentiated cancer (Grade III 53% vs. 33%, p < 0.001), and larger tumor size (28.8 vs. 24.6 mm, p < 0.001). HER2 positive males also had distant site and/or contralateral lymph node involvement more often (13% vs. 7%, p < 0.001), had higher rate of cancer-related mortality (15% vs. 10%, p = 0.002), and shorter overall survival (34 vs. 38 months, p = 0.004).

      Conclusion

      Men diagnosed with HER2 positive breast cancer had more advanced disease at diagnosis and worse outcomes than HER2 negative men despite increased utilization of systemic therapy.

      Keywords

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