387 - Cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) in the staging of HER2-positive breast cancer patients

Date 28 September 2012
Event ESMO Congress 2012
Session Publication Only
Topics Biomarkers
Breast Cancer
Imaging, Diagnosis and Staging
Presenter Muhammet Ali Kaplan
Authors M.A. Kaplan1, A. Inal1, M. Kucukoner1, Z. Urakci1, F. Ekici1, U. Firat2, A. Isikdogan3
  • 1Medical Oncology, Dicle University, 21280 - Diyarbakir/TR
  • 2Pathology, Dicle University, 21280 - Diyarbakir/TR
  • 3Medical Oncology, Dicle University, 21280 - diyarbakir/TR



The aim of the current study was to evaluate whether early detection of brain metastases could improve survival outcomes in HER2-positive breast cancer patients.

Patients and methods

HER2-positive breast cancer patients without neurological symptoms within 12 months from current stage of diagnosis were included in the study. The factors affecting the development of brain metastasis in the entire group and the metastatic patients were investigated, respectively. Survival durations after first metastasis and brain metastasis were compared between the asymptomatic and symptomatic patients


Eleven of the 96 patients (11.5%) had occult brain metastasis. Of whom 9 patients were in the metastatic group, only 2 patients were in the non-metastatic group, (22% vs 3.6%, respectively, p = 0.008). Although median survival durations from first metastasis (27.4 vs 20.2 months, respectively, p = 0.858) and brain metastasis (5.2 vs 4.4 months, respectively, p = 0.710) similar, cerebral death was numerically different (22% vs 46%, p = 0.271) in the asymptomatic and symptomatic patients.


Present study suggests that routine cranial imaging do not bring any benefit to the non-metastatic HER2-positive breast cancer patients. Furthermore, although early detection of brain metastasis provides reduction in cerebral deaths, it does not prolong survival in metastatic patients.


All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.