• Tumor cells were identified in mammary vein blood in ten of 38 (26.6%) patients during total mastectomy with axillary dissection performed as the primary therapy for breast carcinoma (pathological stages I and II). This finding was analyzed with respect to 35 histological characteristics of the primary tumors. The presence of blood-borne tumor cells was inversely related to perineural space invasion, whereas there was no apparent relationship with the remaining 34 characteristics. The significance of blood-borne tumor cells remains unknown.
(Arch Surg 112:707-708, 1977)