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Ann Oncol. 1997 Nov;8(11):1089-98.

Squamous cell carcinoma of the penis: multivariate analysis of prognostic factors and natural history in monocentric study with a conservative policy.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Institut Gustave-Roussy, Villejuif, France.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Penile carcinoma is uncommon in Western countries. Here we report on a large series of patients with squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) of the penis, describing prognostic factors, survival and therapeutic results.

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

From 1973 to 1993, 102 patients with invasive SCC of the penis were treated at the Institut Gustave-Roussy. Precancerous lesions and conditions associated with penis cancer were analyzed retrospectively. Survival curves were estimated by the Kaplan-Meier method, and groups were compared for outcome by the log rank test for univariate comparisons and by Cox's proportional hazards model for multivariate analysis.

RESULTS:

The median age at onset was 58 years. Sixty-nine patients presented with Jackson's stage I disease, 17 with stage II and 15 with stage III. The interval between the manifestation of symptoms and the diagnosis was more than a year in 13.7% of cases. Precancerous lesions were found in 17 (16.6%) patients, and a history of phimosis was noted in 25 (24.5%). In situ and invasive carcinoma were observed together in 17 (16.6%) cases and dysplasia was associated with invasive carcinoma in eight (7.8%) further cases. Conservative treatment was administered whenever feasible. Interstitial brachytherapy was performed alone or associated with limited surgery (local excision or circumcision) in 72 (70.6%) patients. Of the 28 patients with a local relapse, nine have died of their neoplasms (32%) compared to 21 of 28 patients with lymph node relapse (75%). The median follow-up was 111 months. Disease-free survival, disease-specific survival and overall survival were, respectively, 56%, 72% and 63% at five years and 42%, 66% and 50% at 10 years. Age (P = 0.01), the N status (P < 0.00001) or palpable nodes (P < 0.0038), corpus involvement (P = 0.006) and a verrucous histology (P = 0.038) had significant prognostic relevance for survival in the univariate analysis whereas the performance status, T status and Broders' grade did not. In the multivariate analysis only two parameters, involvement of the corpus (P < 0.0001) and palpable nodes (P = 0.009), were singled out as being independent variables influencing survival. A subgroup of nine patients with verrucous histologies were distinguished by their freedom from node involvement. These patients had an excellent prognosis: all are alive and disease-free. Penile integrity was preserved during follow-up in 54 patients (52.9%), 31 of whom are still alive. Of 72 patients treated by a conservative approach including brachytherapy, long-term penile integrity was maintained in 49 (68%).

CONCLUSION:

Corpus involvement and clinically palpable nodes are highly statistically significant independent factors influencing overall survival. Node relapses remain a major cause of death. Thus, better management of lymph nodes is essential for improving survival even when conservative therapy is used to treat the primary.

PMID:
9426328
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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