Treatment Outcomes in Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer.
Background: Anaplastic thyroid cancer (ATC) is rare, accounting for 1-2% of thyroid malignancies. Median survival is only 3-10 months, and the optimal therapeutic approach has not been established. This study aimed to evaluate outcomes in ATC based on treatment modality. Methods: Retrospective review was performed for patients treated at a single institution between 1990 and 2015. Demographic and clinical covariates were extracted from the medical record. Overall survival (OS) was modeled using Kaplan Meier curves for different treatment modalities. Univariate and multivariate analyses were conducted to assess the relationships between treatment and disease characteristics and OS. Results: 28 patients with ATC were identified (n = 16 female, n = 12 male; n = 22 Caucasian, n = 6 African-American; median age 70.9). Majority presented as Stage IVB (71.4%). Most patients received multimodality therapy. 19 patients underwent local surgical resection. 21 patients received locoregional external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) with a median cumulative dose of 3,000 cGy and median number of fractions of 16. 14 patients received systemic therapy (n = 11 concurrent with EBRT), most commonly doxorubicin (n = 9). 16 patients were never disease free, 11 patients had disease recurrence, and 1 patient had no evidence of disease progression. Median OS was 4 months with 1-year survival of 17.9%. Regression analysis showed that EBRT (HR: 0.174; 95% CI: 0.050-0.613; p=0.007) and surgical resection (HR: 0.198; 95% CI: 0.065-0.598; p=0.004) were associated with improved OS. Administration of chemotherapy was not associated with OS. Conclusions: Anaplastic thyroid cancer patients receiving EBRT to the thyroid area/neck and/or surgical resection had better OS than patients without these therapies, though selection bias likely contributed to improved outcomes since patients who can undergo these therapies tend to have better performance status. Prognosis remains poor overall, and new therapeutic approaches are needed to improve outcomes.
Corrigan, KL; Williamson, H; Elliott Range, D; Niedzwiecki, D; Brizel, DM; Mowery, YM
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