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Background:Breast cancer is a leading cancer among women worldwide. The present study was conducted to assess serum IL-6 level in breast cancer and its correlation with tumor size.
Materials & Methods:51 FNAC proven cases of breast cancer and 30 FNAC proven cases of benign breast disease were included in the study. Patient presented with lump first assessed for the size of tumor using a Vernier caliper. FNAC was done under full aseptic precaution, to detect the cases of breast cancer patients and the cases of benign breast diseases. Trucut biopsy was performed in the cases, that were not diagnosed on FNAC. 3 ml of blood sample was taken by peripheral venepuncture. The sample was collected in pyrogen or endotoxin free collecting tube. After clot formation, centrifugation of sample was done at 1000g for 10 min. Serum removed and stored in aliquot. Interleukin-6 was assessed using ELISA technique.
Results: The age group of breast carcinoma patients ranged from 25 to 77 years with a mean age of 42.7 years. The maximum number of cases 24/51 (47.1%) were between 40-50 years of age. Twenty seven out of 51 patients of breast carcinoma (52.94 %) in our study were post-menopausal, while 16.66% cases (5/30) of benign breast disease and 50/% of controls i.e. 15/30 were post- menopausal. 11 out of 51 breast cancer patients (21.5%) had tumor size less than 2cm, whereas maximum number of patients i.e. 26/51 (50.9 %) had tumor size between 2 to 5 cm. 14 out of 51 breast cancer patients (27.4 %) were found to have tumor size more than 5 cm. 28 cases of breast cancer cases (52.94%) with her2neu negative expression (0 and 1+) were found to have mean concentration of 16.22pg/ml (6.25 -32.5). Mean serum interleukin-6 concentration were found to be higher in 21 cases (41.17 %) of breast cancer patients with 3+ her2neu expression on IHC (mean 22.49 pg/ml).
Conclusion: Serum IL-6 levels in breast cancer patients are significantly higher than in patients of benign breast disease and normal controls. This increased levels in carcinoma breast patients correlates significantly and directly with tumor size, lymph node metastasis and distant metastasis. As all patients with IL-6 values of more than 12 pg/ml had confirmed breast cancer in our study, IL-6 values higher than 12 pg/ml in a patient with an indeterminate non-inflammatory breast lump could be taken as highly suggestive of malignancy.