Annals of African Surgery

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Correlation between receptor status and presence of axillary lymph node metastasis in breast cancer in Kenya

Marilynn Omondi Akinyi, Kiptoon Dan, Ojuka Kinyuru Daniel, Walong Edwin


Background: Breast cancer survival is linked to early detection, and timely and appropriate treatment. Survival depends on the stage and biological behaviour of the tumour. It is unclear how different molecular subtypes impact on axillary node involvement.

Objective: This study sought to determine the correlation between hormonal receptor status with axillary nodal status in breast carcinoma.

Methodology: A cross sectional study was carried out at Kenyatta National Hospital surgical wards and histopathology laboratory. Patients with a histological diagnosis of breast cancer, scheduled to undergo a modified radical mastectomy, were recruited. Data collected included age at diagnosis, parity, menopausal status, clinical examination findings, stage of the disease clinically and pathologically, and hormonal receptor status. Data were analyzed using SPSS version 21.0.

Results: We enrolled 79 women with invasive breast carcinoma. Mean age was 48
(SD=14.5) years. Most (48.1%) presented with stage III tumour. Most tumours (58.2%) were luminal A. Correlation between molecular type and nodal involvement was not significant. Luminal B was significantly present in those above 50 years (p=0.011).

Conclusion: The most common molecular type of breast cancer was luminal A, but luminal B disease which was prevalent in women more than 50 years old was the only molecular subtype that had a positive correlation with axillary nodal status.

Keywords: Breast cancer, Axillary lymph nodes, Molecular subtypes, Hormonal receptor status, HER-2 status
AJOL African Journals Online