Review of current perspectives on low-energy X-ray intraoperative radiotherapy in early stage breast cancer
In early stage breast cancer, intraoperative radiation therapy (IORT) is a form of accelerated partial breast irradiation (APBI) that provides attractive therapeutic effects while shortening the overall treatment time and sparing the normal tissue radiation exposure. This technique has been used in Taiwan for several years in selected patients with breast cancer. However, some randomized trials pointed out that IORT is associated with higher rate of recurrence, therefore impeding its wider use as one of the standard managements in breast cancer. Also, despite its theoretical benefits for smaller tumor after surgery, the problem of recurrence warrants the necessity of strict and careful patient selection. The purpose of this article is to comprehensively review the updated consensus and current opinions on the use of IORT for early stage breast cancer.