© 2005-2012 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). All rights reserved worldwide.
Posted online March 20, 2007 on www.jco.org.
Alexandria, VA— A new study shows that among men treated for breast cancer, African-American men are less likely to survive than white men. The results of the study are being published in the March 20 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology (JCO).
Male breast cancer accounts for less than 1% of all breast cancers and less than 1% of all cancers in men, but the number of men diagnosed with breast cancer has been increasing, rising by about 60% between 1990 and 2000. In 2006, approximately 1,700 new cases were diagnosed in the United States, and about 400 men died of the disease.
This study analyzed race and other information that may have had an impact on treatment and survival in men with stage I-III breast cancer. The study looked at 510 men, including 456 white men and 34 African-American men. The researchers found five-year survival rates of approximately 90% among white men and 66% among black men.
What Does This Mean for Patients?
Racial disparities in the survival of white and black women with breast cancer have been well studied, but male breast cancer has not been similarly examined. It will be important to further study the underlying causes of these disparities in order to ensure optimal care for all men with breast cancer. Men with breast cancer — especially black men — should talk with their doctors about all available treatment options.