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Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 1988 Nov;15(5):1129-33.

Carcinoma of the nasal cavity--results of primary and adjuvant radiotherapy.

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  • 1Washington University School of Medicine, Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, St. Louis, MO 63110.


Carcinomas of the nasal cavity are uncommon and the reported experience with radiotherapy is scarce. From 1969-1984, 62 patients with carcinoma of the nasal cavity received radiotherapy as all or part of initial treatment at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, Washington University Medical Center. Epidermoid carcinoma was the most common histologic subtype, occurring in 46 cases (73%), undifferentiated carcinoma in 10 cases (16%), and adenoid cystic carcinoma in 6 cases (10%). Minimum follow-up was 2.1 years, maximum 16.9 years, and the median was 6.9 years. Relapse-free survival and overall actuarial survival at 5 years were 47% and 52%, respectively; at 10 years, they were 42% and 32%, respectively. Of 35 recorded deaths, 16 were due to the nasal cavity carcinoma, 17 to intercurrent disease, 2 to postoperative complications. Survival was not significantly affected by histology (epidermoid vs undifferentiated), site, nodal status or treatment (radiotherapy alone vs radiotherapy + surgery). Local control was correlated significantly with tumor extent (p less than 0.04) and marginally with treatment (p = 0.15). Elective neck irradiation was not given. Nodal failure occurred in 10/52 patients (19%) with initially N0 necks. Of four patients presenting with N1 disease, one failed in the untreated contralateral neck.

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