1985: Levine, PH., et al. (1985). Inflammatory breast cancer: the experience of the surveillance, epidemiology, and end results (SEER) program. Journal of the National Cancer Institute, 74(2), 291-7. Abstract below:

The current status of inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) among U.S. females was reviewed with the use of data abstracted from medical records of patients diagnosed with breast cancer between 1975 and 1981 in nine geographic areas covered by the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program. Patients were selected on the basis of reported clinical and pathologic features of IBC and were divided into 3 groups: I) both clinical and pathologic features of IBC; II) clinical features without pathologic confirmation; and III) pathologic evidence only. The age distribution of pathologically defined IBC, in general, showed younger ages than those for other breast cancers in both the white and black populations. Further analysis was restricted to white females due to the relatively small numbers of black and other nonwhite patients with IBC. The disease presentations of both clinically and pathologically defined IBC were similar with regard to the likelihood of the presence of metastases at initial staging. Survival was evaluated by comparison of patients with nonmetastatic (MO) disease. Three years after diagnosis, the relative survival rates among patients in groups I, II, and III were observed to be 34, 60, and 52%, respectively. Survival of patients with all other types of breast cancer was 90% at 3 years. The management of IBC appeared to differ from the treatment of other forms of breast cancer; chemotherapy was given more frequently as the first course of cancer-directed therapy in white SEER females with evidence of MO IBC compared with the group with MO non-IBC. When all possible combinations of initial therapy were considered, the treatment for IBC was more variable than the treatment for non-IBC.

1985: Grace, WR., & Cooperman, AM. (1985). Inflammatory breast cancer. The Surgical Clinics of North America, 65(1), 151-60. Abstract below:

Of all malignancies in women, perhaps none is as lethal or as frustrating to the surgeon as inflammatory breast cancer. No significant progress in curing or controlling inflammatory breast cancer was made until the last decade, when investigators, noting the futility of local therapies, applied systemic therapies with some significant improvement in survival. This article outlines the epidemiology, clinical signs, differential diagnosis, pathology, and treatment of this disease.

1985: Kokal, WA., et al. (1985). Inflammatory breast carcinoma: a distinct entity?. Journal of Surgical Oncology, 30(3), 152-5. Abstract below:

Sixty-four patients with the diagnosis of either inflammatory or locally advanced breast cancer were analyzed with respect to age, menopausal status, estrogen receptor protein (ERP) measurements, characteristics on clinical presentation, disease-free interval (DFI), and overall survival. There were no significant differences between the two groups in the patients’ clinical presentation, DFI, or overall survival time. Patients with inflammatory carcinoma were significantly younger as well as more likely to be pre- or perimenopausal than patients with locally advanced breast cancer. Of those patients who had ERP measurements performed, patients with inflammatory breast cancer had a significantly decreased incidence of ERP(+) tumors in comparison to patients with locally advanced breast cancer. These results suggest that inflammatory carcinoma of the breast behaves as an ERP(-) subtype of locally advanced breast carcinoma rather than a truly distinct entity.

1985: Schlappack , OK., et al. (1985). Male breast cancer [article in German]. Wien Klin Wochenschr, 97(23), 888-91. Abstract below:

Between 1974 and 1982 inclusive 18 male patients were treated for breast carcinoma. 12 patients had postoperative radiotherapy whereas 4 were referred for treatment of recurrent or metastatic disease. One patient showed signs of inflammatory breast cancer and was treated with chemo-radiotherapy and one was being followed up in our department after radiotherapy for prostatic cancer in 1970. Median overall survival was 52 months and the median disease-free interval was 21 months.

1987: Chamadol, W., Pesie, M., & Puapairoj, A. (1987). Inflammatory carcinoma of the breast in a 12-year-old thai girl. Journal of the Medical Association of Thailand, 70(9), 543-8.

…Carcinoma of the breast in a child or adolescent by contrast is extremely rare….The lesion was precipitated by trauma and progressed rapidly, involving the whole breast showing a characteristic picture of inflammatory breast carcinoma. Multiple ipsilateral axillary nodes and supraclavicular node were present. Combined treatment by radiotherapy and chemotherapy could not control the disease and the patient died within 8 months after diagnosis and definite treatment began.

Case Report: A 12-year-old girl was referred…on November 28, 1983. Her chief complaint was of a painful mass in the left breast for one month. Two months previously she had been struck by a football on her left breast. She noted mild pain and used analgesic balm to soothe it. A few days later a mass was palpable in her left breast, the size was about the size of the tip of her little finger, mobile and non-tender. She noticed that the mass enlarged gradually without any other symptoms. One month later it had rapidly enlarged, became tender and inflamed. Her mother brought her to the district hospital where a breast abscess was diagnosed and treated by incision and drainage but there was no pus. After treatment the mass continued to grow. The physician referred her to the provincial hospital. At the provincial hospital she was diagnosed to be stage III of left breast cancer… Her development from childhood was normal and she had had no remarkable illnesses. Her mother is living, and well and there was no history of cancer in her family. The girl had not yet begun menstruating.

At Srinagarind hospital, physical examination revealed…a mass 12cm, in diameter, occupying the whole left breast. The surface skin was erythematous and edematous with some evidence of an eczematoid lesion. The nipple was retracted. There was a surgical scar on the lateral side of the breast. The mass was firm in consistency, tender and fixed to the skin and underlying muscles…A clinical diagnosis of inflammatory breast carcinoma was made and incisional biopsies of the left breast including skin and left supraclavicular lymph node were performed under local anesthesia.

The histological examination revealed that tumor cells had infiltrated breast stroma and invaded through the dermis. The section from the left supraclavicular lymph node revealed tumor cells of the same histology as were seen in the breast biopsy specimen. The pathological diagnosis was poorly differentiated, infiltrating breast carcinoma. Ultrastructure study was performed…and demonstrated ductal epithelial-like structure in these tumor cells. The final diagnosis was inflammatory breast carcinoma, poorly differentiated, ductal cell type.

Inflammatory breast carcinoma is a disease diagnosed by clinicopathological correlation. The clinical picture very closely resembles an acute inflammation of the breast and the characteristic pathology is infiltration of the subepidermal lymphatics and vessels by tumor cells. In this patient, the clinical picture was typical but the microscopic study could not demonstrate subepidermal lymphatics and vessels invasion due to high infiltration of tumor cells in dermis.

1988: Bock, E. (1988). Radiological and ultrasonographical diagnosis of inflammatory breast cancer. Rays, 13(2), 53-7. No abstract available.

1992: Jaiyesimi, IA., Buzdar, AU., & Hortobagyi, G. (1992). Inflammatory breast cancer: a review. Journal of Clinical Oncology, 10(6), 1014-24.

The natural history of inflammatory breast cancer and the recent advances in its management were reviewed. DESIGN: The English medical literature from 1924 to 1990 was reviewed using the Cancerline and Medline retrieval systems, and through a manual review of bibliographies of identified articles. RESULTS: The majority of patients with inflammatory breast cancer treated only with local therapies died 18 to 24 months after diagnosis. A combined modality approach with chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation therapy has improved disease-free and overall survival rates for inflammatory breast cancer. Approximately 35% to 55% of patients treated with combined modality regimens remain disease-free and alive at 5 years. CONCLUSION: Induction combination chemotherapy administered with radiation therapy, mastectomy, both, or with additional chemotherapy favorably alters the natural history of inflammatory breast cancer. New drug combinations and high-dose chemotherapy with autologous bone marrow support are being evaluated to improve further patient survival.

1993: Finkel, LJ, & Griffiths, CE. (1993). Inflammatory breast carcinoma (carcinoma erysipeloides): an easily overlooked diagnosis. The British Journal of Dermatology, 129(3), 324-6.

A 70-year-old woman developed erythema and induration of the right chest wall, and swelling of her right arm. The provisional diagnosis was deep venous thrombosis and/or cellulitis of the right arm. Skin biopsy showed a poorly differentiated adenocarcinoma within lymphatic vessels, and immunohistochemical staining revealed this to be of breast origin. Inflammatory carcinoma or carcinoma erysipeloides represents < 1% of all cases of breast carcinoma. Our case illustrates the importance of considering this entity in the differential diagnosis of unilateral chest wall erythema and induration.

1994: Singletary, SE., Ames, FC., & Buzdar, AU. (1994). Management of inflammatory breast cancer. World Journal of Surgery, 18(1), 87-92.

Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is a rare but often fatal disease. This review discusses the following conclusions: (1) The diagnosis of IBC is based on the clinical triad of erythema, ridging with peau d’orange, and rapid onset. The importance of histologic evidence of dermal lymphatic involvement is controversial. (2) Combining doxorubicin-containing chemotherapy with mastectomy or radiation therapy improves survival over that achieved with mastectomy or irradiation alone. (3) Mastectomy after induction chemotherapy may not improve survival or decrease locoregional recurrence rates, but the surgery does provide important prognostic information on treatment response and enables use of a lower radiation dose afterward, which results in reduced long-term complications. (4) The optimal number of cycles and dose intensity of chemotherapy for IBC remain undefined.