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16.03.2016 | Original Article – Clinical Oncology | Ausgabe 6/2016

Journal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology 6/2016

Incidence and risk factors for morbidity and mortality in elderly head and neck cancer patients undergoing major oncological surgery

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology > Ausgabe 6/2016
Autoren:
Shin Hyuk Yoo, Jong-Lyel Roh, Seung-Ho Choi, Soon Yuhl Nam, Sang Yoon Kim

Abstract

Purpose

Cancer incidence in the elderly population has been continuously rising, and their treatment is an increasing concern among oncologists. This study aimed to evaluate the incidence and risk factors for morbidity and mortality after major oncological surgery in elderly patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC).

Methods

The 196 HNSCC patients aged 55 and older who underwent major curative surgery. Patients were categorized into three groups: far-old (≥75 years; n = 41); old (65–74 years; n = 72); or middle-aged (55–64 years; n = 83). The rates of early and late postoperative complications, hospital stays, and mortality were compared among groups. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to identify the factors associated with early postoperative complications.

Results

No study patients had mortality during surgery or within 3-month postoperation. Karnofsky performance status, frail functional status, comorbidity, and index cancer and noncancer mortality were the poorest in the far-old group. The far-old group demonstrated significantly higher rates of early overall complications, readmission within 1 month, and recurrence rates (P < 0.05 each). Multivariate analysis showed that age, postoperative hemoglobin, and C-reactive protein are independent predictors of early postoperative complications (P < 0.05 each).

Conclusions

In elderly patients, chronological age affects the increased risk of early postoperative morbidity and later mortality following major HNSCC surgery. In combination with these risk factors, older patients who are diagnosed with HNSCC should be carefully monitored in order to determine the potential occurrence of postsurgical complications.

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