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Table 3 Kaplan-Meier progression-free survival (PFS) and overall survival (OS) estimates stratified by CTC level and patient and tumor characteristics in patients with newly diagnosed metastatic IBC

From: Circulating tumor cells in newly diagnosed inflammatory breast cancer

  Progression-free survival Overall survival
Variable Hazard ratio Lower 95% CI Upper 95% CI P value Hazard ratio Lower 95% CI Upper 95% CI P value
All patients         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.40 0.21 0.75 0.03 0.29 0.14 0.62 0.03
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.76 0.43 1.31 0.30 0.65 0.35 1.19 0.15
ER/PR positive for either         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.30 0.13 0.67 0.03 0.14 0.05 0.37 0.02
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.57 0.27 1.20 0.13 0.54 0.24 1.22 0.14
ER/PR negative for both         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.69 0.24 2.00 0.54 0.64 0.19 2.19 0.54
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.97 0.41 2.27 0.94 0.67 0.26 1.73 0.37
HER-2/neu positive         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.22 0.05 0.90 0.11 NA a NA a NA a 0.11
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.82 0.20 3.32 0.78 0.48 0.10 2.36 0.38
HER-2/neu negative         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.75 0.32 1.72 0.53 0.52 0.21 1.29 0.26
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.66 0.36 1.22 0.16 0.58 0.30 1.14 0.09
Triple negative         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.92 0.22 3.79 0.91 0.79 0.20 3.04 0.74
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.34 0.10 1.14 0.01 0.35 0.10 1.28 0.02
High Grade         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.38 0.19 0.77 0.03 0.23 0.10 0.54 0.03
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.61 0.31 1.18 0.11 0.54 0.26 1.12 0.08
Low/intermediate grade         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.75 0.12 4.54 0.77 1.05 0.13 8.45 0.96
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 1.30 0.44 3.87 0.61 0.87 0.28 2.71 0.81
Visceral metastases         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.13 0.05 0.32 0.01 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.03
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.66 0.30 1.45 0.28 0.49 0.21 1.16 0.07
Non-visceral metastases         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.66 0.28 1.56 0.39 0.62 0.22 1.77 0.44
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.87 0.40 1.88 0.71 0.78 0.33 1.83 0.55
Bone metastasis         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.29 0.13 0.66 0.03 0.18 0.06 0.50 0.06
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.67 0.31 1.43 0.28 0.51 0.22 1.20 0.12
No-bone metastasis         
<1 CTC vs. ≥ 1 CTC 0.56 0.21 1.51 0.33 0.47 0.16 1.41 0.29
<5 CTC vs. ≥ 5 CTC 0.78 0.34 1.79 0.55 0.78 0.32 1.87 0.56
  1. ER, estrogen receptor; NR, not reached; PR, progesterone receptor; NA, not applicable.
  2. aNo events in patients with fewer than one CTCs.