Background: Patients with esophageal carcinoma and celiac, cervical, or other nonregional nodal metastases generally have a poor prognosis after surgical resection. Factors predicting long-term survival are unclear. The goal of this study was to analyze factors predicting long-term survival in this subset of patients. Methods: We conducted a retrospective review of a prospective database over a 20-year period to identify patients with resected esophageal carcinoma with nonregional lymph node metastases. Medical records were reviewed and risk factors were analyzed. Results: Sixty-seven patients underwent esophagectomy for M1a or M1b disease from 1987 to 2007. Esophagectomy was transthoracic in 62 patients and transhiatal in 5. The median number of lymph nodes harvested was 36. Sites of nodal metastases were the following: recurrent nodal chain in 42 patients, celiac in 20, both recurrent and celiac in 4, and paratracheal in 1. Median length of follow-up was 66 months. The 5-year overall survival for the entire cohort was 25%. The 5-year overall survival was significantly higher with earlier T-status, (pathologic tumor [pT]1/T2 vs pT3/T4; 62% vs 15%, p = 0.006). Thirteen patients who had nonregional nodal metastases without involvement of regional nodes (pN0) had a significant improvement in 5-year survival (67% vs 15%; p < 0.001). Patients with squamous cell carcinomas had higher 5-year survival compared with those with adenocarcinomas (42% vs 14%; p = 0.009). Patients treated with induction chemotherapy had prolonged 5-year survival (41%, p = 0.06) compared with those treated with adjuvant chemotherapy (11%) or no therapy (20%). Multivariate analysis demonstrated that chemotherapy treatment, squamous cell type, and early T stage (pT1/T2) are significant positive predictors of survival. Conclusions: Surgical resection for patients with esophageal cancer associated with nonregional nodal metastases results in 25% survival at five years. Squamous histology, earlier T status, and perioperative chemotherapy are independent positive predictors of long-term survival.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine