Use of adjuvant radiation after lumpectomy in elderly women with early-stage triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is associated with improved overall and disease-specific survival, according to findings presented at the American Society of Oncology’s 2015 Breast Cancer Symposium in San Francisco, CA.

Sean Szeja, MD, and Sandra Hatch, MD, of the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, TX, looked at 12,620 cases of TNBC taken from the SEER Database of patients diagnosed from 2010 to 2011 in order to determine how addition of adjuvant radiation would affect survival in those women at least 70 years of age in stage T1-2, N0, or M0.

Among these patients, 4,002 had undergone lumpectomy, with 974 who were age 70 and above. Radiation was given to 662 of these patients.

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The researchers found that lumpectomy and adjuvant radiation was associated with an improved overall survival rate of 98.2% compared to 85.6% with lumpectomy alone, as well as an improved disease-specific survival rate of 99% compared to 94%.

“Noting the potential for selection bias in this study, future prospective study is required to define the management of early stage TNBC,” the authors concluded.


  1. Szeja S, Hatch SS. Outcomes associated with adjuvant radiation after lumpectomy for elderly women with T1-2N0M0 triple-negative breast cancer: SEER analysis. Abstract presented at the American Society of Oncology’s 2015 Breast Cancer Symposium; September 25-27, 2015; San Francisco, CA. Accessed September 30, 2015.