[:en]Metastatic breast cancer management: a 5 cases Quality of Life analysis[:ro]Analiza calității vieții pacientelor diagnosticate cu neoplasm mamar stadiul IV[:]

[:en]Cornelia Nitipir (a,b), Andra Cătălina Butolo (b), Cristian Iaciu (b), Alexandru Opriță (b), Bogdan Popescu (b), Irina Radu (b), Răzvan Costin (b), Maria Alexandra Barbu (b)

(a): MD, PhD, senior oncologist, University of Medicine and Pharmacy Carol Davila, Bucharest, Romania
(b): MD, oncologist, Elias Emergency University Hospital, Department of Oncology, Bucharest, Romania

Corresponding author:
Dr Niţipir Cornelia, e-mail: nitipir2003@yahoo.com


Breast cancer is the most common female cancer worldwide with an incidence increasing by 1% yearly. About 20% of breast cancer patients present metastases and around 50% of those with an operable breast cancer experience relapse. Despite the new era of cancer treatment, the average survival for patients with metastatic breast cancer is still between 2 and 4 years. The quality of life of these patients should be one of the primary end points of the treatment.

Case series
We present an analysis of a 5 cases of patients with metastatic breast cancer showing that chemotherapy, immunotherapy and osteoclast inhibitors modified the levels of quality of life by significantly improving it. The patients filled in a questionnaire (Edmonton Symptom Assessment System) to assess their quality of life before treatment initiation in our clinic, after the first 3 cycles of chemotherapy, and after the last cycle. We found that quality of life was improved especially in terms of pain control, relief of tiredness, appetite and well-being.  Despite disease progression and development of new metastasis, the patients did not experience important changes in their clinical status. They maintained a good performance status that allowed us to alternate multiple lines of therapy and to control the disease with minimal toxicity.

Metastatic breast cancer is a disease with a long natural evolution, but a well conducted treatment with a multidisciplinary approach may achieve a quality of life comparable with that of women of a similar age with no personal history of breast carcinoma.

Key words: metastatic breast cancer, quality of life, performance status

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