To determine the incidence of and reasons for recurrences after immediate breast reconstruction in breast cancer patients.
The data of 79 patients undergoing immediate breast reconstruction between 1998 and 2001 in Kuopio University Hospital were re-examined from both the local cancer register and the patient charts at the end of year 2003.
There were five local recurrences (6.3%), one regional recurrence (1.2%), and three cases (3.8%) presented bone and/or visceral metastases. All recurrences except one (primary tumor noninvasive) appeared within the first two years after primary therapy. Young age and increasing size of the tumour were risk factors for distant or logoregional metastases.
Immediate breast reconstruction is a safe procedure in breast cancer patients, but a multidisciplinary team is needed for careful patient selection.