Postmastectomy radiation therapy and breast reconstruction: An analysis of complications and patient satisfaction

Bernard T. Lee, Tolulope A. Adesiyun, Salih Colakoglu, Michael S. Curtis, Janet H. Yueh, Katarina E. Anderson, Adam M. Tobias, Abram Recht

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

75 Scopus citations


The indications for postmastectomy radiotherapy (PMRT) have expanded over the past decade. This study examines PMRT and reconstruction compared with a control group without radiotherapy. There were 919 reconstructed breasts identified (1999-2006) and separated into 3 groups: mastectomy with PMRT before reconstruction (n = 57), immediate reconstruction then PMRT (n = 59), and reconstruction without PMRT (n = 665). A validated questionnaire assessed patient satisfaction (response rate 73.7%). Overall complication rates for patients undergoing PMRT (before and after reconstruction) were higher than that of the controls (39.66% vs. 23.16%, P < 0.001). Immediate reconstruction before PMRT had increased overall and late (>90 days) complication rates, compared with controls (47.46% vs. 23.16%, P < 0.001; 33.90% vs. 15.59%, P < 0.001, respectively); however general and aesthetic satisfaction was similar. In contrast, PMRT before reconstruction has similar complication rates and general satisfaction with controls, but decreased aesthetic satisfaction (50% vs. 66.88%, P < 0.035).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)679-683
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of plastic surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Breast cancer
  • Breast reconstruction
  • Mastectomy
  • Radiation therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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