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Prescription Refill Gap of Endocrine Treatment from Electronic Medical Records as a Prognostic Factor in Breast Cancer Patients

 Yura Lee  ;  Yu Rang Park  ;  Ji Sung Lee  ;  Sae Byul Lee  ;  Il Yong Chung  ;  Byung Ho Son  ;  Sei Hyun Ahn  ;  Jong Won Lee 
 JOURNAL OF BREAST CANCER, Vol.22(1) : 86-95, 2019 
Journal Title
Issue Date
Breast neoplasms ; Estrogen antagonists ; Medication adherence ; Neoplasm metastasis
Purpose: Discontinuation of hormone therapy is known to lead to a poorer prognosis in breast cancer patients. We aimed to investigate the prescription gap as a prompt index of medication adherence by using prescription data extracted from patient electronic medical records.

Methods: A total of 5,928 patients diagnosed with invasive, non-metastatic breast cancer, who underwent surgery from January 1, 1997 to December 31, 2009, were enrolled retrospectively. The prescription data for 4.5 years of hormonal treatment and breast cancer-related events after treatment completion were analyzed. We examined the characteristics and prognoses of breast cancer in patients with and without a 4-week gap.

Results: Patients with a gap showed a significantly higher risk of breast cancer recurrence, distant metastasis, breast cancer-specific death, and overall death after adjustment (hazard ratio [HR], 1.389; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.089-1.772; HR, 1.568; 95% CI, 1.158-2.123; HR, 2.108; 95% CI, 1.298-3.423; and HR, 2.102; 95% CI, 1.456-3.034, respectively). When patients were categorized based on gap summation, the lower third (160 days) and fourth (391 days) quartiles showed a significantly higher risk of distant metastasis (HR, 1.758; 95% CI, 1.186-2.606 and HR, 1.844; 95% CI, 1.262-2.693, respectively).

Conclusion: A gap of > 4 weeks in hormonal treatment has negative effects on breast cancer prognosis, and can hence be used as a sentinel index of higher risk due to treatment non-adherence. Further evaluation is needed to determine whether the gap can be used as a universal index for monitoring the adherence to hormonal treatment.
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1. College of Medicine (의과대학) > Dept. of Biomedical Systems Informatics (의생명시스템정보학교실) > 1. Journal Papers
Yonsei Authors
Park, Yu Rang(박유랑) ORCID logo https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4210-2094
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