Quality of Life in Male Breast Cancer: Prospective Study of the International Male Breast Cancer Program (EORTC10085/TBCRC029/BIG2-07/NABCG)

Carolien P Schröder*, Elise van Leeuwen-Stok, Fatima Cardoso, Barbro Linderholm, Coralie Poncet, Antonio C Wolff, Vesna Bjelic-Radisic, Gustavo Werutsky, Miguel H Abreu, Ivana Bozovic-Spasojevic, Irma den Hoed, Aafke H Honkoop, Maartje Los, Jose P Leone, Nicola S Russell, Tineke J Smilde, Annette W G van der Velden, Catherine Van Poznak, Marije M Vleugel, Rachel L YungCorneel Coens, Sharon H Giordano, Kathryn J Ruddy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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INTRODUCTION: Prospective data about quality of life (QoL) in men with breast cancer (BC) are lacking. A prospective registry (EORTC10085) of men with all BC stages, including a QoL correlative study, was performed as part of the International Male Breast Cancer Program.

METHODS: Questionnaires at BC diagnosis included the EORTC QLQ-C30 and BR23 (BC specific module), adapted for men. High functioning and global health/QoL scores indicate high functioning levels/high QoL; high symptom-focused measures scores indicate high symptoms/problems levels. EORTC reference data for healthy men and women with BC were used for comparisons.

RESULTS: Of 422 men consenting to participate, 363 were evaluable. Median age was 67 years, and median time between diagnosis and survey was 1.1 months. A total of 114 men (45%) had node-positive early disease, and 28 (8%) had advanced disease. Baseline mean global health status score was 73 (SD: 21), better than in female BC reference data (62, SD: 25). Common symptoms in male BC were fatigue (22, SD: 24), insomnia (21, SD: 28), and pain (16, SD: 23), for which women's mean scores indicated more burdensome symptoms at 33 (SD: 26), 30 (SD: 32), and 29 (SD: 29). Men's mean sexual activity score was 31 (SD: 26), with less sexual activity in older patients or advanced disease.

CONCLUSIONS: QoL and symptom burden in male BC patients appears no worse (and possibly better) than that in female patients. Future analyses on impact of treatment on symptoms and QoL over time, may support tailoring of male BC management.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e877–e883
Number of pages7
JournalThe Oncologist
Issue number10
Early online date13-Jun-2023
Publication statusPublished - Oct-2023

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