Background: Compared with other breast cancer subtypes, triple negative breast cancers (TNBC) are associated with higher recurrence rates and worse survival. Because of the aggressive nature of TNBC, outcomes may be more sensitive to delays in time to treatment. This study evaluates whether delays from diagnosis to initial treatment in TNBC impacts survival or locoregional recurrence (LRR). Methods: Retrospective review of TNBC patients treated between January 2004 and January 2011 at an academic center was performed. Data collected included demographics, pathology, treatment, recurrence, and survival. Interval to treatment was defined as days from pathologic diagnosis to first local or systemic treatment. The t test, Cox regression, and Kaplan-Meier analyses were used to evaluate impact of time to treatment on overall survival and LRR. Results: Median follow-up was 40 months for 301 TNBC patients. Mean interval to treatment was 46 ± 2 days. Higher initial stage yielded worse survival (p <.0001). Interval to treatment did not impact overall survival (p =.24), although there was a trend toward worse survival with delays of >90 days (p =.06). LRR was seen in 20 patients (7 %). Median time to recurrence was 15 months. Time to treatment was 38 ± 6 days for patients with LRR versus 44 ± 2 days without a recurrence (p =.37). Short delay in time to treatment did not impact LRR (p =.54). Conclusions: In TNBC, a short delay from pathologic diagnosis to initial treatment does not appear to adversely affect survival or LRR. Appropriate time to perform evaluations such as genetic testing, imaging, or additional consultation can be taken to guide optimal treatment options.
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