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J Clin Oncol. 2013 Feb 10;31(5):543-50. doi: 10.1200/JCO.2012.44.0164. Epub 2013 Jan 7.

Deintensification candidate subgroups in human papillomavirus-related oropharyngeal cancer according to minimal risk of distant metastasis.

Author information

1
Room 5-624, Princess Margaret Hospital, 610 University Ave, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M5G 2M9. Brian.OSullivan@rmp.uhn.on.ca

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To define human papillomavirus (HPV) -positive oropharyngeal cancers (OPC) suitable for treatment deintensification according to low risk of distant metastasis (DM).

PATIENTS AND METHODS:

OPC treated with radiotherapy (RT) or chemoradiotherapy (CRT) from 2001 to 2009 were included. Outcomes were compared for HPV-positive versus HPV-negative patients. Univariate and multivariate analyses identified outcome predictors. Recursive partitioning analysis (RPA) stratified the DM risk.

RESULTS:

HPV status was ascertained in 505 (56%) of 899 consecutive OPCs. Median follow-up was 3.9 years. HPV-positive patients (n = 382), compared with HPV-negative patients (n = 123), had higher local (94% v 80%, respectively, at 3 years; P < .01) and regional control (95% v 82%, respectively; P < .01) but similar distant control (DC; 90% v 86%, respectively; P = .53). Multivariate analysis identified that HPV negativity (hazard ratio [HR], 2.9; 95% CI, 2.0 to 5.0), N2b-N3 (HR, 2.9; 95% CI, 1.8 to 4.9), T4 (HR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.2 to 2.9), and RT alone (HR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.1 to 2.5) predicted a lower recurrence-free survival (RFS; all P < .01). Smoking pack-years > 10 reduced overall survival (HR, 1.72; 95% CI, 1.1 to 2.7; P = .03) but did not impact RFS (HR, 1.1; 95% CI, 0.7 to 1.9; P = .65). RPA segregated HPV-positive patients into low (T1-3N0-2c; DC, 93%) and high DM risk (N3 or T4; DC, 76%) groups and HPV-negative patients into different low (T1-2N0-2c; DC, 93%) and high DM risk (T3-4N3; DC, 72%) groups. The DC rates for HPV-positive, low-risk N0-2a or less than 10 pack-year N2b patients were similar for RT alone and CRT, but the rate was lower in the N2c subset managed by RT alone (73% v 92% for CRT; P = .02).

CONCLUSION:

HPV-positive T1-3N0-2c patients have a low DM risk, but N2c patients from this group have a reduced DC when treated with RT alone and seem less suited for deintensification strategies that omit chemotherapy.

PMID:
23295795
DOI:
10.1200/JCO.2012.44.0164
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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