Surgeons' Perspectives on Surgery of Breast Cancer in Iran: The Pattern and Determinants

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Massoome Najafi
Mohamadreza Neishaboury
Nazanin Ghafari
Shahpar Haghighat
Fereydoon Memari
Ahmad Kaviani


Breast conserving therapy, surgeon practice, mastectomy, Iran


Background: The purpose of this study was to assess Iranian surgeons' perceptions toward mastectomy and breast conserving therapy (BCT) and determine the contributing factors.

Methods: In this cross-sectional study, a structured questionnaire was devised and hosted on and a link to the questionnaire was emailed to surgeons registered in Iranian Medical Council, branch of Tehran. The results of the current study were compared to a similar study which was performed in 2004 on a comparable sample of surgeons in Tehran, Iran.

Results: A total 166 surgeons filled out the study questionnaire. Only 24 surgeons declared that they have not performed BCT before. Variables that showed a significant association with performing BCT were attending a breast surgery or surgical oncology fellowship (P = 0.010) and breast surgery workshop (P = 0.042). No associations were observed between performance of BCT and age category (P = 0.951), gender (P = 0.416), duration of practice (P = 0.821), number of breast cancer patients per year (P = 0.083), and setting of practice categorized as teaching – nonteaching hospitals (P = 0.417). Comparing the results of the current study with the study performed in 2004 revealed a significant increase in the frequency of surgeons who performed BCT (85.5% vs 19.3%, respectively) (P < 0.001). Participants of the current study were more likely to mention "lack of experience" as the reason for not performing BCT compared to the previous study (P = 0.004).

Conclusions: Our results delineated that there was a significant increase in the percentage of surgeons performing BCT compared to the previous study. Factors significantly associated with performing BCT were participating in a surgical oncology or breast surgery fellowship or short courses in breast surgery.

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