April 14, 2014

Mastectomy Reconstruction Outcomes Consortium (MROC) study

The goal of the MROC study is to provide patients and physicians with useable, relevant, up-to-date information on the relative pros and cons of various breast reconstruction operations.

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MROC Masectomy Reconstruction Outcomes Consortium graphic

Many women facing mastectomy after a breast cancer diagnosis choose breast reconstruction to alleviate some of the adverse psychosocial effects of their disease and treatment. To actively participate in the reconstruction decision-making process, however, breast cancer survivors need objective, up-to-date information on breast reconstruction outcomes - information that surgeons often struggle to provide, leaving both the patient and her doctor at a loss.

Led by Ed Wilkins, MD, professor of plastic surgery at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and Andrea Pusic, MD, associate attending surgeon at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, the MROC study is designed to evaluate breast reconstruction from the patient's point of view, tracking postoperative pain, psychosocial well-being, physical functioning, fatigue and patient satisfaction. Patient surveys are administered at several intervals beginning with a preoperative assessment to establish a baseline and then one week, three months, one year and two years post-op. With the ability to precisely measure factors such as fatigue, satisfaction and pain on a large scale, the goal of the MROC study is to provide patients and physicians with useable, relevant, up-to-date information on the relative pros and cons of various breast reconstruction operations.

Procedures being compared include:

  • Deep inferior epigastric perforator (DIEP) flaps
  • Expanders/implants
  • Free TRAM flaps
  • Inferior gluteal artery perforator (IGAP) techniques
  • Latissimus dorsi flaps with implant
  • Pedicle transverse rectus abdominis musculocutaneous (TRAM) flaps
  • Superficial inferior epigastric artery (SIEA) flaps
  • Superior gluteal artery perforator (SGAP) flaps

Participating medical centers include:

  • Dartmouth Medical School
  • Georgetown University
  • MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Northwestern University
  • St. Joseph's/Mercy Health Care System
  • Ohio State University
  • University of California
  • University of Manitoba
  • University of Michigan
  • Vanderbilt University

The MROC study will track patients through 2016 with a goal of comparing outcomes for roughly 5,000 breast reconstruction patients. To complete their surveys, the study allows patients to log-on from work or home with a password, which has streamlined the data-gathering process and is expected to improve patient participation over the two-year evaluation period. MROC will also evaluate the effects of race and ethnicity on reconstruction outcomes. Both immediate and delayed breast reconstruction patients are eligible to participate in the study.

For more information about the Mastectomy Reconstruction Outcomes Consortium (MROC) study, contact:

Dr. Edwin Wilkins
2130 Taubman Center, SPC 5340
1500 East Medical Center Drive
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-5340
ewilkins@umich.edu