Long-term follow-up of cisplatin combination chemotherapy in patients with disseminated nonseminomatous germ cell tumors: Is a postchemotherapy retroperitoneal lymph node dissection needed after complete remission?

Yaron Ehrlich, Mary J. Brames, Stephen D.W. Beck, Richard S. Foster, Lawrence H. Einhorn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

98 Scopus citations

Abstract

Purpose: Controversy arises regarding the optimal management of patients with nonseminomatous germ cell tumor (NSGCT) who achieve a serologic and radiographic complete remission (CR) to systemic chemotherapy. Some authors recommend postchemotherapy retroperitoneal lymph node dissection (PC-RPLND), whereas others omit surgery and observe these patients. In an attempt to address this question, we report the long-term follow-up of patients treated at Indiana University who were observed without PC-RPLND. Patients and Methods: This is a retrospective analysis of patients with NSGCT who achieved a CR to first-line chemotherapy and were monitored without further therapy. CR was defined as normalization of serum tumor markers and resolution of radiographic disease (residual mass < 1 cm). Results: One hundred forty-one patients were identified. Five patients (4%) had less than 2 years of follow-up. After a median follow-up of 15.5 years, 12 patients (9%) experienced relapse. Of these 12 patients, eight patients currently have no evidence of disease (NED), and four patients died of disease. The estimated 15-year recurrence-free survival (RFS) and cancer-specific survival rates were 90% and 97%, respectively. The estimated 15-year RFS for good-risk patients (n = 109) versus intermediate- or poor-risk patients (n = 32) was 95% and 73% (P = .001), respectively. Six patients (4%) experienced recurrence in the retroperitoneum, of whom two patients died of disease. Five patients had late relapse (range, 3 to 13 years), including two patients in the retroperitoneum. All five patients currently have NED. Conclusion: Patients obtaining a CR after first-line chemotherapy can be safely observed without PC-RPLND. Relapses are rare and potentially curable with further treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)531-536
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Oncology
Volume28
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research

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