T-category remains an important prognostic factor for oropharyngeal carcinoma in the era of human papillomavirus.Clin Oncol (R Coll Radiol) 2014; 26(10):643-7CO
To determine prognostic factors for locoregional relapse (LRR), distant relapse and all-cause death in a contemporary cohort of locoregionally advanced oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) treated with definitive chemoradiotherapy or radiotherapy alone.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
OSCC patients treated with definitive radiotherapy between 2005 and 2010 were identified from a prospective head and neck database. Patient age, gender, smoking history, human papillomavirus (HPV) status, T- and N-category, lowest involved nodal level and gross tumour volume of the primary (GTV-p) and nodal (GTV-n) disease were analysed in relation to LRR, distant relapse and death by way of univariate and multivariate analysis.
In total, 130 patients were identified, 88 HPV positive, with a median follow-up of 42 months. On multivariate analysis HPV status was a significant predictor of LRR (hazard ratio 0.15; 95% confidence interval 0.05-0.51) and death (hazard ratio 0.29; 95% confidence interval 0.14-0.59) but not distant relapse (hazard ratio 0.53, 95% confidence interval 0.22-1.27). Increasing T-category was associated with a higher risk of LRR (hazard ratio 1.80 for T3/4 versus T1/2; 95% confidence interval 1.08-2.99), death (hazard ratio 1.37, 95% confidence interval 1.06-1.77) and distant relapse (hazard ratio 1.35; 95% confidence interval 1.00-1.83). Increasing GTV-p was associated with increased risk of distant relapse and death. N3 disease and low neck nodes were significant for LRR, distant relapse and death on univariate analysis only.
Tumour HPV status was the strongest predictor of LRR and death. T-category is more predictive of distant relapse and may provide additional prognostic value for LRR and death when accounting for HPV status.