The effect of 1-day multidisciplinary clinic on breast cancer treatment

Zohaib Akhtar, Vered Stearns, Paul Cartwright, Amanda L. Blackford, Vishnu Prasath, Catherine Klein, Danijela Jelovac, Fariba Asrari, Mehran Habibi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: A delay in breast cancer treatment is associated with inferior survival outcomes; however, no clear guidelines exist defining the appropriate time frame from diagnosis to definitive treatment of breast cancer. A multidisciplinary approach for breast cancer treatment can minimize the time from diagnosis to first treatment. We hypothesized single-day multidisciplinary clinic (MDC) may accelerate the time to first treatment on complex breast cancer cases at our institution. Methods: We identified patients who were treated at Johns Hopkins for stage II or III breast cancer, who were at least 18 years of age, and were seen in a new single-day MDC with coordination between two or three specialties or by specialists from varying disciplines on different days (IDC). Patients who initiated treatment between May 2015 (initiation of MDC clinic) and December 2017 were included in our study. Results: A total of 296 patient records were reviewed independently. The mean (SD) patient age was 55 (13) years. The median time to first neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NACT) was significantly reduced for patients seen in the MDC (12.7 days), compared to those seen at the IDC (24.4 days, logrank p < 0.001). The median time to definitive surgery was similar between groups (31 and 32 days for the MDC and IDC cohorts, respectively). Conclusions: A single-day MDC visit is associated with a reduced time from diagnosis to NACT. Further studies are needed to determine if a shorter interval can improve the management and the outcome of complex breast cancer cases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)623-629
Number of pages7
JournalBreast Cancer Research and Treatment
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1 2020


  • Breast cancer
  • Interdisciplinary
  • Multidisciplinary
  • Neoadjuvant chemotherapy
  • Oncology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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