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Keywords:

  • head and neck neoplasms;
  • chemoradiation;
  • intraarterial infusions;
  • selective-targeted chemoradiation (RADPLAT);
  • tumor volume;
  • prognostic factors

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Concurrent chemoradiation is being used increasingly to treat patients with advanced-stage head and neck carcinoma. In the current study, a clinical nomogram was developed to predict local control and overall survival rates for individual patients who will undergo chemoradiation.

METHODS

Ninety-two consecutive patients with UICC TNM Stage III/IV squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity, oropharynx, hypopharynx, and supraglottic larynx were treated with selective-targeted chemoradiation (acronym: RADPLAT). All living patients had a minimum follow-up of 2 years. In addition to general factors, the following parameters were analyzed in a multivariable analysis: primary tumor volume, lymph node tumor volume, total tumor volume, lowest involved neck level, comorbidity, pretreatment hemoglobin level, pretreatment weight loss, and unilateral/bilateral intraarterial infusion. Relevant factors for local control and survival were analyzed using the Cox proportional hazards model.

RESULTS

At 5 years, the local control and overall survival rates for the whole group were 60% and 38%, respectively. Primary tumor volume (hazard ratio [HR], 1.03; P = 0.01) and unilateral infusion (HR, 5.05; P = 0.004) were found to influence local control significantly. Using tumor volume as a continuous variable, an adjusted risk ratio of 1.026 was found, indicating that each 1-cm3 increase in volume was associated with a 2.6% decrease in probability of local control. Primary tumor volume (HR, 1.01; P = 0.003), comorbidity (American Society of Anesthesiologists [ASA] physical status 1 vs. > 1; HR, 2.47; P = 0.01), lowest involved neck level (HR, 3.45; P = 0.007), and pretreatment weight loss > 10% (HR, 2.04; P = 0.02) were found to be significant predictors of worse overall survival. Variables from the multivariable analysis were used to develop a nomogram capable of predicting local control and overall survival.

CONCLUSIONS

Tumor volume was found to play a significant role in predicting local control and overall survival in patients with advanced-stage head and neck carcinoma who were treated with targeted chemoradiation. The nomograms may be useful for pretreatment selection of patients with advanced-stage head and neck carcinoma. Cancer 2004. © 2004 American Cancer Society.