Multidisciplinary therapy (MDT) of node-positive rectal cancer is considered optimal. We performed a retrospective cohort study of node positive rectal cancer patients diagnosed between January 1, 1994 and December 31, 2003 in Region 5 of the California Cancer Registry to determine the impact of MDTon disease specific survival (DSS). During the study period, 398 patients with stage III rectal cancer were identified. Only 251 patients (63.1%) received radiation (XRT). Patients receiving XRT had significantly improved survival when compared with those who did not (5 year DSS 55% with XRT vs 36% without XRT, median follow-up 43 months, P < 0.001). There was no statistically significant difference in Tstage (P = 0.41), the number of N1 patients (P = 0.45), or the number of positive nodes harvested (mean 11.5 w/o XRT vs 12.8 w/XRT, P = 0.37) between patients receiving XRT and those who did not. Patients receiving XRT were far more likely to receive systemic chemotherapy (83% vs 27%, P < 0.0001). Multidisciplinary therapy of node-positive rectal cancer is associated with improved DSS. However, substantial numbers of node positive rectal cancer patients are not receiving MDT. Greater efforts are needed to implement consistent multidisciplinary algorithms into rectal cancer management.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||4|
|State||Published - Oct 1 2010|
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