Clinical Relevance of Resection Margins in Patients with Total Laryngectomy or Laryngopharyngectomy

Simone E. Bernard*, Cornelia G.F. van Lanschot, Aniel Sewnaik, Maria A.J. de Ridder, Jose A. Hardillo, Dominiek A. Monserez, Robert J. Baatenburg de Jong, Senada Koljenović

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Laryngeal and hypopharyngeal cancer is complex and resection margins are therefore constrained. The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical relevance of resection margins in laryngeal and hypopharyngeal surgery.

A retrospective cohort study was performed for patients treated with a total laryngectomy (TL) or laryngopharyngectomy (TLP) for laryngeal or hypopharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (LSCC and HSCC, respectively). Within the groups primary LSCC, recurrent LSCC, primary HSCC, and recurrent HSCC the relationship between the status of the resection margin according to the Royal Collage of Pathology and the recurrence and survival rates were investigated.

Positive resection margins were found in 54% for primary LSCC, 29% for recurrent LSCC, 62% for primary HSCC, and 44% for recurrent HSCC. For primary and recurrent LSCC, there was a linear association between total recurrence and narrowing margins (p = 0.007 resp. p = 0.008). Multivariate survival analysis for primary and recurrent LSCC showed a significantly worse disease free and disease-specific survival in case of positive margins compared to clear margins.

Similar survival rates were recorded for close and clear margins for primary and recurrent LSCC. This may suggest that a margin > 5 mm is not clinically relevant in terms of survival. Therefore, a margin of 1–5 mm should be accepted in certain subsites. Margins < 1 mm are related to significantly worse outcomes and should be avoided.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2038
Number of pages10
Issue number11
Early online date28 May 2024
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2024

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