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Volume 16, Number 6, 2011

Partial breast irradiation techniques in early breast cancer

Agata Kacprowska, Jacek Jassem


Whole breast irradiation represents an integral part of combined breast-conserving treatment
of early breast cancer. A new concept includes replacing traditionally fractionated
whole breast postoperative radiotherapy by accelerated partial breast irradiation. The latter
involves a variety of techniques and may be applied intraoperatively or shortly after the
surgery. The intraoperative techniques include photon or electron external beam irradiation
and interstitial high dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy, whereas the postoperative techniques
comprise interstitial brachytherapy, be it HDR, pulse dose rate (PDR) or low dose rate (LDR),
intracavitary brachytherapy and external beam radiotherapy using electrons, photons or
protons. This article presents accelerated partial breast irradiation techniques, ongoing
phase III trials evaluating their value and recommendations for clinical practice.

Signature: Rep Pract Oncol Radiother, 2011; 16(6) : 213-220

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