Impact of age at diagnosis on prognosis and treatment in laryngeal cancer




The aims of this study were to analyze how age affects treatment and treatment outcome, and to determine whether tumor characteristics differ between different age groups with laryngeal cancer.


Patients with laryngeal cancer during 1978–2004 in the Uppsala–Örebro region in Sweden were retrospectively studied.


There were no significant differences in the 945 cases between age groups concerning major patient and tumor characteristics, such as male/female ratio, distribution of glottic/supraglottic tumors, stage, or site of recurrence. Overall survival (OS) and disease-specific survival (DSS) were worse among the oldest, although a significant proportion was cured. Relapse risk was lower among the oldest (12%) compared with the youngest (23%). The risk of never becoming tumor-free was 25% among the oldest and 7% in the youngest. Among the most elderly, only 1 late recurrence occurred.


Elderly patients with laryngeal carcinoma cope well with treatment. Undertreatment may determine outcome more than age. The oldest group should be followed for a minimum of 2 years. © 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Head Neck, 2010