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Bilateral Carcinoma of the Breast

John G. Shellito, MD; Wayne C. Bartlett, MD
Arch Surg. 1967;94(4):489-494. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1967.01330100053008.
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A SURVEY of our current patients was undertaken in order to determine the actual number of bilateral carcinomas of the breast in our series and to summarize the reported experiences of others.

Davis1 reported, in 1920, eight cases of bilateral carcinoma in a series of 166 patients. This study was followed by that of Kilgore2 in 1921, who suggested that stage 1 patients may well have a higher incidence of cancer of the second breast because they live longer and, therefore, have time to develop the second carcinoma. In 1953, Reese,3 in a survey of 504 patients with mammary cancer, finding 20 to be bilateral, stated that bilateral breast cancer is more often due to two primary tumors than to dissemination of a single growth.

Carroll and Shields4 summarized the reports of bilateral breast cancer available to them in 1955, showing the number of cases and


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