Alveolar cell carcinoma of the lung: a retrospective analysis of 205 patients.
From 1970 to 1986, survival of 205 patients with alveolar cell carcinoma was retrospectively studied. Analysis examined the predictive value of presenting symptoms and diagnostic screening results for pathological Stage III or IV disease (advanced) and survival. The lesion presented as a peripheral mass in 121 patients (59%) and as an infiltrate in 84 (41%). Follow-up data were available on 199 patients (97%). Variables analyzed included indices of background or risk factors, presenting symptoms, diagnostic test results, and clinical management. Seventy-nine patients (39%) had a histological diagnosis of advanced disease by TMN staging criteria. Of the 152 deaths (74%), 117 (77%) were related to the pulmonary carcinoma. Univariate analysis associated short-term and long-term anorexia, weight loss, generalized weakness, and profound dyspnea with advanced disease and ultimately with death due to cancer. Multivariate logistic regression analyses suggested that weight loss and dyspnea disclosed independent information about the likelihood of advanced disease for this population (p less than 0.0003). Cox proportional hazard regression analyses of survival revealed a significant association between weight loss and death due to alveolar cell carcinoma after pathological stage was taken into account (p = 0.001). In this series, the 80 patients with Stage I disease had the best prognosis (5-year survival of 55%). There was no significant difference in disease-free survival between patients having wedge resection (N = 17) and those having lobectomy (N = 63) for Stage I disease.
Harpole, DH; Bigelow, C; Young, WG; Wolfe, WG; Sabiston, DC
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