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J Korean Soc Ther Radiol > Volume 9(1); 1991 > Article
Journal of the Korean Society for Therapeutic Radiology 1991;9(1): 65-72.
Distant Metastases of Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma after Definite Irradiation
Eun Ji Chung, Hyung Sik Lee, Sun Rock Moon, Gwi Eon Kim, John J Kyo Loh
Department of Radiation Oncology, College of Medicine, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea.
One hundred and thirty five patients with carcinoma of the nasopharyx were treated by radiation therapy in the Department of Radiation Oncology, Yonsei Cancer Center, Yonsei University between August 1977 and July 1987. Of the 30 patients omitted: 8 had distant metastases at initial diagnosis or during radiotherapy; 18 patients refused or did not received a full course of radiation therapy, and four had not been confirmed histologically. The remaining 105 patients were analyzed to determine the incidence and patter of distant metastases. Diagnosis of distant metastases was made based on clinical signs and radiography, even though histologic confirmation was not made. Twenty-six patients developed distant metastases after definite irradiation of nasopharyx and neck, an incidence rate of 24.8%. The common sites of distant metastases were, in descending order, bone, lung, liver, and brain. There was a strong correlation between Ho's N stage and distant metastases rate. But sex, age, histologic subtype (squamous cell and undifferentiated cell), AJC T and N stage, treatment modalities (radiotherapy alone and radiotherapy combined with chemotherapy) were not significant. Of those patients who developed distant metastases, 80.8% were discovered within 2 years of their radical radiotherapy. The prognosis for nasopharyngeal carcinoma patients developing distant metastases was poor: median survival was nine months and 80% of those patients died within two years of the initial diagnosis of distant metastasis.
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