Table 1.

Characteristics of patients with primary breast cancer (stage M0) examined for circulating tumor cells

Tumor/patient characteristicsNo. of patients (%)No. of patients with tumor cells (%)P
Tumor size*
    T138 (64.4)4 (10.5)0.75
    T219 (32.2)1 (5.3)
    T3/T42 (3.4)0
Nuclear grading
    G15 (8.5)1 (20)0.16
    G230 (50.8)3 (10)
    G324 (40.7)1 (4.2)
Axillary lymph node status
    Positive22 (36.7)00.147
    Negative38 (63.3)5 (13.2)
Estrogen receptor status
    Positive46 (78)4 (8.7)1
    Negative13 (22)1 (7.7)
Progesterone receptor status
    Positive40 (67.8)3 (7.5)0.41
    Negative19 (32.2)2 (10.5)
Ki-67 expression
    Low (≤30%)41 (71.9)4 (10.8)1
    High (>30%)16 (28.1)1 (6.2)
HER-2/neu expression
    Positive (2+/3+)13 (22)2 (15.4)0.3
    Negative (0/1+)46 (78)3 (6.5)
  • NOTE: Data were not available from all patients. Percentage refers to the number of patients with data available.

  • * Total of 60 patients.