Pregnancy After Early-Stage Breast Cancer Does Not Increase Recurrence Risk

June 6, 2017
Lisa Schulmeister, RN, MN, APRN-BC, FAAN

A recent study presented at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting found that breast cancer survivors who became pregnant had no greater risk of recurrence or death than women who underwent breast cancer treatment but did not become pregnant.

A common survivorship concern among young women diagnosed with breast cancer is childbearing. Historically, the safety of pregnancy following breast cancer treatment has been a concern, especially for women who are estrogen receptor (ER) positive.

International researchers conducted a multicenter study of 1207 women treated for non-metastatic breast cancer who then became pregnant in the first 5 years following treatment. The pregnant cohort (333 women) was matched with women who received breast cancer treatment but did not have a subsequent pregnancy (874 women) in the first 5 years following treatment. The primary endpoint was disease-free survival.

The researchers found that breast cancer survivors had no greater risk of recurrence or death than the women who underwent breast cancer treatment but did not become pregnant. The researchers noted that this is the largest study on the safety of pregnancy in women with ER-positive breast cancer.

Their long-term follow-up suggests that pregnancy is safe and should not be discouraged irrespective of ER status. They also concluded that their results further strengthen the rationale of the ongoing IBCSG-BIG-NABCG POSITIVE trial (NCT02308085) on the role of temporary interruption of adjuvant endocrine therapy to allow pregnancy. For more on the study, click here.