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Urology. 2010 Feb;75(2):328-32. doi: 10.1016/j.urology.2009.07.1350.

Lymphovascular invasion and pT stage are prognostic factors in patients treated with radical nephroureterectomy for localized upper urinary tract transitional cell carcinoma.

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Department of Urology, Urological Science Institute, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.



To investigate the prognostic significance of lymphovascular invasion (LVI) in patients with localized upper urinary tract transitional cell carcinoma (UUT-TCC) after radical nephroureterectomy.


The clinical records of 271 patients with UUT-TCC who underwent radical nephroureterectomy between 1986 and 2006 were reviewed. Patients with pT4 stage, lymph node involvement, or distant metastasis were excluded. A total of 238 patients with pTa-3N0M0 were eligible. The prognostic significance of various clinicopathologic factors was analyzed using univariate and multivariate analysis. The mean age was 64.1 years (range, 25-91 years) and the median follow-up duration was 53.4 months (range, 3-240 months).


LVI was present in 31 patients (13%). LVI was related to higher pT stage, high tumor grade, sessile architecture, and squamous differentiation. On univariate analysis, tumor architecture, squamous differentiation, LVI, tumor grade, and pT stage influenced disease-specific survival. On multivariate analysis, LVI (hazards ratio [HR], 2.33; P = .014) and pT stage (HR, 2.07; P = .021) showed significantly different rates of disease-specific survival. Patients were classified according to pT stage and LVI. The high-risk group (pT3 and LVI+) showed significantly worse disease-specific survival than the low- (pT < or = 2 and LVI-) or intermediate-risk groups (pT3 and LVI-, pT < or = 2 and LVI+) (P <.001 and P = .032, respectively).


LVI and pT stage are significant prognostic factors for recurrence-free and cancer-specific survivals in patients with localized UUT-TCC. LVI and pT stage would be helpful for selecting patients who are appropriate for postoperative adjuvant chemotherapy.

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