Young age and pathological features predict breast cancer outcome – report from a dual Institution experience in Serbia

Publish – JBUON 2015; 20(6): 1407-1413, ISSN: 1107-0625, online ISSN: 2241-6293 •

AUTHORS : Ana Cvetanovic, Lazar Popovic, Sladjana Filipovic, Jasna Trifunovic, Nikola Zivkovic, Gorana Matovina-Brko, Milos Kostic, Ferenc Vicko, Biljana Kocic, Ivana Kolarov-Bjelobrk

Key words: breast cancer, Serbia, 35 years-old, young age



The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of clinicopathological and biological characteristics on prognosis, disease free survival (DFS) and overall survival (OS), of very young patients (≤35 years of age) with breast cancer.


We retrospectively collected information of 150 women diagnosed with breast cancer, aged ≤35 years, who were operated and treated at two University Hospitals in Serbia between January 2009 and February 2011.


After a median follow up of 44 months patients ≤30 had shorter DFS and OS compared to patients aged 31-35 years (p=0.004 and p=0.037, respectively). The differences in DFS and OS were significant with decreased survival associated with higher tumor grade (p=0.005 and p=0.0001, respectively). Tumor size and number of positive nodes were predictors of outcome with decreased survival associated with higher tumor size (p=0.0019 for DFS and p<0.0001 for OS) and increasing number of nodes (p<0.0001 for both). HER 2 receptor did not seem to have a prognostic influence while patients with hormonal receptors (HRs) positive tumors had a better DFS (p=0.034) and OS (p=0.046) than those with HRs negative tumors. In univariate survival analysis, a significant difference in DFS (p=0.0003) and OS (p=0.0003) was found between patients with vs without lymphovascular invasion (LVI).


Diagnosis of breast cancer at very young age (≤30) was associated with increased risk of death and shorter DFS than women aged 31- 35. Negative impact on survival was seen in patients with presence of LVI, negative HRs and higher grade and stage at the time of presentation.