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Keywords:

  • testicular cancer;
  • seminoma;
  • radiotherapy;
  • survivor;
  • second malignant neoplasm;
  • cardiovascular disease;
  • suicide;
  • all-cause mortality

BACKGROUND

Few studies have quantified temporal patterns of cause-specific mortality in contemporary cohorts of men with early-stage seminoma. Given that several management strategies can be applied in these patients, each resulting in excellent long-term survival, it is important to evaluate associated long-term sequelae. In particular, data describing long-term risks of cardiovascular disease (CVD) are conflicting.

METHODS

We identified 9193 men diagnosed with stage I seminoma (ages 15-70 years) in the population-based SEER registries (1973-2001). We calculated survival estimates, standardized mortality ratios (SMRs), and adjusted hazard rates (AHRs).

RESULTS

During 121,037 person-years of follow-up (median, 12.3 years), 915 deaths (SMR, 1.23; 95% CI, 1.16-1.32) were reported, with significant excesses for suicide (n = 39; SMR, 1.45; 95% CI, 1.06-1.98), infection (n = 58; SMR, 2.32; 95% CI, 1.80-3.00), and second malignant neoplasms (SMNs; n = 291; SMR, 1.81; 95% CI, 1.61-2.03), but not CVD (n = 201; SMR, 0.91; 95% CI, 0.80-1.05). After radiotherapy (78% patients), CVD deaths were not increased (n = 158; SMR, 0.89; 95% CI, 0.76-1.04), in contrast to SMN deaths (n = 246; SMR, 1.89; 95% CI, 1.67-2.14). SMN mortality was higher among patients administered radiotherapy than among those not given radiotherapy (AHR, 1.36; 95% CI, 0.99-1.88; P = .059), with a cumulative 15-year risk of 2.64% (95% CI, 2.19-3.16). Suicide, although rare, accounted for 1 in 230 deaths.

CONCLUSIONS

Modern radiotherapy as applied in this large population-based study is not associated with excess CVD mortality. Although increased all-cause mortality exists, cumulative SMN risk is considerably smaller than reported in historical series, but additional follow-up will be required to characterize long-term trends. The increased risk of suicide, previously unreported in men with stage I seminoma, requires confirmation. Cancer 2013;119:2771–2777. © 2013 American Cancer Society.