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עמוד בית
Tue, 28.05.24

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September 2012
D. Hershko, R. Abdah-Bortnyak, A. Nevelsky, E. Gez, ,G. Fried, and A. Kuten

Background: Local recurrences after breast-conserving surgery occur mostly at the site of the primary carcinoma. The main objective of postoperative radiotherapy is sterilization of residual cancer cells. Whole-breast radiotherapy is the standard of care, but its utility has recently been challenged in favor of radiotherapy limited to the area at highest risk of recurrence. Intraoperative electron radiotherapy (IOeRT) is an innovative technique for accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI) that is applied to selected patients affected by early breast cancer.

Objectives:  To describe our experience with IOeRT at the Rambam Health Care Campus in Haifa since we began utilizing this modality in 2006.

Methods: From April 2006 to September 2010, 31 patients affected by unifocal invasive duct breast carcinoma ≤ 2 cm diameter received wide local resection followed by intraoperative radiotherapy with electrons. Patients were evaluated for early and late complications, and other events, 1 month after surgery and every 3 months thereafter for the duration of the first 2 years.

Results: After a mean follow-up of 36 months, seven patients developed mild breast fibrosis and three suffered from mild postoperative infection. Rib fractures were observed in four patients before routine lead shielding was initiated. Additional whole-breast irradiation was given to four patients. None of the patients developed local recurrences or other ipsilateral cancers. Similarly, no contralateral cancers or distant metastases were observed.

Conclusions: Intraoperative electron radiotherapy may be an alternative to external beam radiation therapy in an appropriate selected group of early-stage breast cancer patients. However, long-term results of clinical trials are required to better evaluate the indications and utility of this technique in the management of breast cancer.

May 2012
O. Wolf, M. Westreich and A. Shalom

Background: There are two main approaches to breast reduction surgery today: the traditional long scar ("Wise-pattern") technique and the more recent short ("vertical") scar technique, which is becoming more popular. During the last two decades there has been a gradual shift between the two techniques, including in our institute.

Objectives: To evaluate the evidence behind this obvious trend.

Methods: We retrospectively collected data from archived hospital charts of all patients who underwent breast reduction surgery during the period 1995–2007. Epidemiological, clinical and postoperative data were analyzed and compared between patients who were operated on by means of the short scar vs. the long scar techniques.

Results: During the study period 91 patients underwent breast reduction surgery in our department: 34 with the Wise-pattern breast reduction technique and 57 with the short-scar procedure. There was no significant difference in operative and postoperative data, including length of hospital stay. In some of the categories there was even a slight advantage (but not statistically significant) to the former. The only significant difference was the size of reduction, with a tendency to prefer the long scar technique for larger reductions; however, with gained experience the limit for short scar reductions was gradually extended to a maximum of 1470 g.

Conclusions: We noticed a sharp increase in the safe and uneventful practice of the short scar technique in breast reduction in our institute for removing ≤ 1400 g – especially in young women without extreme ptosis. This observation, together with other advantages, namely, reduced scar length, prolonged shape preservation and better breast projection, support use of this technique.

April 2012
R. Nesher, R. Kohen, S. Shulman, B. Siesky, Y. Nahum and A. Harris
January 2012
Ronit Lubetzky, MD, Galit Zaidenberg-Israeli, MD, Francis B. Mimouni, MD, Shaul Dollberg, MD, Eyal Shimoni, PhD, Yael Ungar, PhD and Dror Mandel, MD

Background: Human milk produced during prolonged lactation (> 1 year) is extraordinarily rich in fat and has a higher energy content than human milk produced during short lactation.

Objectives: To estimate the fatty acid (FA) profile of human milk and to test the hypothesis that the proportion of C12 and C14 (two dietary saturated FA known to most promote hypercholesterolemia) in human milk during prolonged lactation is similar to that in short lactation.

Methods: We conducted a cross-sectional study of 30 mothers of term infants lactating for more than 1 year as compared with 25 mothers of full-term infants who lactated for 2–6 months. Milk was collected by manual expression in mid-breastfeeding.

Results: The two groups did not differ in maternal height, weight, body mass index, diet, infant birth weight and gestational age, but mothers in the prolonged lactation group were significantly older. There was a significant correlation between lactation duration and C12 or C14. The percentage of all FA combined (except for C12 and C14) decreased significantly over time. In contrast, C12:0 and C14:0 combined increased significantly during lactation (R2 = 10.0%, P < 0.03).

Conclusions: Women who lactated for more than 1 year had higher C12 and C14 FA percentages in their milk than women who lactated for 2–6 months.

December 2011
A.Ben-Haroush, J. Farhi, I. Ben-Aharon, O. Sapir, H. Pinkas and B. Fisch

Background: Adjuvant/neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer patients may be associated with amenorrhea and a marked reduction in ovarian reserve.

Objectives: To assess the use of letrozole with follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) analogue protocols, based on reported attempts to avoid the estradiol (E2) increase during controlled ovarian hyperstimulation for embryo cryopreservation in breast cancer patients using a combination of low dose FSH and aromatase inhibitor (letrozole) in a GnRH-antagonist protocol.

Methods: Twenty-four breast cancer patients were treated with recombinant FSH (150–450 U/day) and letrozole (5 mg/day) in a long GnRH-agonist (n=7) or GnRH-antagonist (n=17) protocol. After oocyte retrieval, insemination and/or intracytoplasmic sperm injection was performed. The embryos were frozen.

Results: The average interval from surgery to oocyte retrieval was 40 days. Average duration of treatment was 9.6 days and mean peak E2 level 1342 ± 1091 pmol/L, yielding 16.0 ± 16.3 oocytes (range 0–82). Mean fertilization rate was 69.5 ± 20.4% and mean number of embryos cryopreserved 10.3 ± 9.3. More oocytes were retrieved with the long GnRH protocol, but the difference was not statistically significant (24.8 ± 24.6 vs. 12.0 ± 8.8 pmol/L, P = 0.07).

Conclusions: As previously reported, ovarian stimulation with letrozole and FSH, in both the long GnRH-agonist and GnRH-antagonist protocols, is apparently effective in breast cancer patients and spares them exposure to high E2 levels.

June 2011
G. Zeligson, A. Hadar, M. Koretz, E. Silberstein, Y. Kriege and A. Bogdanov-Berezovsky
May 2011
April 2011
D. Belkic and K. Belkic

There are major dilemmas regarding the optimal modalities for breast cancer screening. This is of particular relevance to Israel because of its high-risk population. It was suggested that an avenue for further research would be to incorporate advances in signal processing through the fast Padé transform (FPT) to magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS). We have now applied the FPT[1] to time signals that were generated according to in vitro MRS[2] data as encoded from extracted breast specimens from normal, non-infiltrated breast tissue, fibroadenoma and cancerous breast tissue. The FPT is shown to resolve and precisely quantify the physical resonances as encountered in normal versus benign versus malignant breast. The FPT unambiguously delineated and quantified diagnostically important metabolites such as lactate, as well as phosphocholine, which very closely overlaps with glycerophosphocholine and phosphoethanolamine, and may represent a magnetic resonance-visible molecular marker of breast cancer. These advantages of the FPT could clearly be of benefit for breast cancer diagnostics via MRS. This line of investigation should continue with encoded data from benign and malignant breast tissue, in vitro and in vivo. We anticipate that Padé-optimized MRS will reduce the false positive rates of MR-based modalities and further improve their sensitivity. Once this is achieved, and given that MR entails no exposure to ionizing radiation, new possibilities for screening and early detection emerge, especially for risk groups. For example, Padé-optimized MRS together with MR imaging could be used with greater surveillance frequency among younger women with high risk of breast cancer.

[1] FPT = fast Padé transform

[2] MRS = magnetic resonance spectroscopy

November 2010
L. Rubin, S. Nir-Inbar and S. Rishpon

Background: The rate and duration of breastfeeding in Ethiopia is very high. Factors that could affect breastfeeding among women emigrating to Israel include the desire to adopt "modern" behaviors, the availability of infant formulas, and the greater awareness of AIDS and fear of transmission via breast milk.

Objectives: To examine the rate and duration of breastfeeding among recent Ethiopian immigrants to Israel.

Methods Using a structured questionnaire we interviewed 93 Ethiopian born mothers of children aged 2 months to 5 years living in northern Israel.

Results: Ninety-two percent of the children born in Ethiopia were exclusively breastfed as compared to 76.3% of the Israeli born children, in whom the rate of mixed feeding was 18.3%. Although the duration of breastfeeding of the youngest child was significantly shorter than of the firstborn (20.1 vs. 24.8 months), it remains much longer than the average duration for native Israeli mothers. No association was seen between breastfeeding rate or duration and the years since immigration, work outside the home or exposure to formula. The women’s attitude towards breastfeeding was positive despite the lack of specific knowledge concerning breast milk and infant formulas.

Conclusions: Breastfeeding patterns among Ethiopian women have changed since their immigration to Israel. These changes probably reflect the cultural and societal pressures to acculturate to the mores of the adopted society. Reinforcing traditional family and peer support for these women is important to preserve breastfeeding in this population. This should be done within the context of changes in the support for breastfeeding in the general Israeli society.

B. Chikman, R. Lavy, T. Davidson, I. Wassermann, J. Sandbank, N. Siegelmann-Danieli and A. Halevy

Background: Infiltrating ductal carcinoma and infiltrating lobular carcinoma account for more than 90% of all invasive breast cancer histological types. The rate of ILC[1] is reported to be increasing steadily in the United States and Europe.

Objectives: To describe the trend in the incidence of ILC in a large cohort of patients who underwent surgery in a single institution over an 18 year period.

Methods: Our comprehensive database of 2175 consecutive patients with invasive breast cancer diagnosed during the period 1992–2009 served for the analysis. Several potential factors associated with lobular carcinoma as compared with ductal carcinoma were evaluated.

Results: During this period, a 2.4-fold increase in the incidence of pure ILC was noted, from 4.6% in the years 1992–1994 to 10.9% in 2004–2006, followed by a modest decrease to 8.7% in 2007–2009. A significant association of lobular malignancies with external hormonal use was noted, including hormone replacement therapy exposure in patients diagnosed at age 50–64, and ovarian overstimulation during in vitro fertilization in those diagnosed at age 50 or less.  

Conclusions: Better diagnostic tools – such as the liberal use of ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging – and more accurate pathological definition for ILC type appear to influence the changes in the incidence of ILC in the subgroups of invasive breast cancer.

[1] ILC = infiltrating lobular carcinoma

June 2010
A. Yosepovich, C. Avivi, J. Bar, S. Polak-Charcon, C. Mardoukh and I. Barshack

Background: HER2 is an important prognostic and predictive marker in invasive breast cancer. It is currently assessed by immunohistochemistry for protein over-expression and by fluorescence in situ hybridization for gene amplification. The immunohistochemistry-equivocal cases (2+) are currently retested by FISH[1] to determine eligibility for trastuzumab treatment. Retesting by FISH significantly raises the cost of patient management and sometimes delays treatment. The 4B5 is a new, FDA-approved, rabbit monoclonal antibody for HER2 testing.

Objectives: To examine the reliability of 4B5 IHC[2] HER2 testing in cases found to be HER2 status equivocal by CB11 IHC.

Methods: Twenty-eight invasive breast cancer cases, with an equivocal HER2 status by CB11 IHC, were retested by the 4B5 antibody as well as by FISH analysis. The scoring was performed using the same guidelines as HercepTest and was correlated with the FISH ratio. Results: Of the original 28 CB11 clone designated equivocal cases, 14 (50%) showed negative HER2 staining using the 4B5 clone (HercepTest score 0 and 1+). Five cases (18%) proved to be positive (HercepTest score 3+) and 9 cases (32%) remained equivocal (HercepTest score 2+). The corresponding FISH ratio results showed that all 4B5 negative cases were negative by FISH testing, with a negative predictive value of 100% 4 of 5 of the 4B5-positive cases were positive by FISH testing, with a positive predictive value of 80%. One 4B5-positive case was borderline-high (2.2 ratio) by FISH. The correlation between 4B5 IHC and FISH was statistically significant (P = 0.0013) by chi-square test.

Conclusions: Sequential testing by 4B5 IHC could greatly reduce the need for FISH testing in cases considered HER2 equivocal by CB11 IHC.


[1] FISH = fluorescence in situ hybridization

[2] IHC = immunohistochemistry

April 2010
T. Eidlitz-Markus, M. Mukamel, Y. Haimi-Cohen, J. Amir and A. Zeharia

Background: Pathologic breast conditions are rare in childhood and adolescence. The spectrum of breast disease in the pediatric age group is different from that in adults, and most lesions are benign

Objectives: To describe the causes and characteristics of breast asymmetry in adolescents with normal endocrine profiles and sexual development.

Methods: The files of patients with a diagnosis of breast asymmetry referred to a tertiary pediatric center from 1990 to 2007 were reviewed for history and findings on physical examination with or without imaging, treatment and outcome.

Results: Eleven patients aged 12.5 to 18 years were identified. The cause of the breast asymmetry was traced to unpreventable medical factors in eight patients (physiologic, Poland anomaly, scleroderma), preventable/iatrogenic factors in two patients (chest tissue biopsy, thoracic drain), and possible combined medical-iatrogenic factors in one patient (scoliosis treated by a body brace). All patients were referred for breast reconstruction after full breast development.

Conclusions: Severe breast asymmetry in adolescence may be due to congenital factors, diseases involving the breast tissue, or to the effects of medical treatment, and may have severe adverse psychological and social implications. To prevent iatrogenic breast asymmetry, physicians should be made aware of the sensitivity of the breast tissue and should avoid unnecessary tests/procedures that involve the chest wall. In most cases a precise medical history and physical examination can differentiate between physiologic and non-physiologic causes.

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