The clinical relevance of indeterminate lung nodules in patients with locally recurrent rectal cancer

J M van Rees*, D J Höppener, J A W Hagemans, J Rothbarth, D J Grünhagen, J J M E Nuyttens, E van Meerten, M de Vries, C Verhoef

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Abstract

AIM: To evaluate the clinical relevance of indeterminate lung nodules (ILN) in patients with locally recurrent rectal cancer (LRRC) treated in a tertiary referral centre.

METHODS: All patients with LRRC diagnosed between 2000 and 2017 were retrospectively reviewed. Reports of staging chest CT-scans were evaluated for ILN. Patients with distant metastases including lung metastases at time of LRRC diagnosis were excluded. Overall (OS), progression-free survival (PFS) and the cumulative incidence of lung metastases were compared between patients with and without ILN.

RESULTS: In total 556 patients with LRRC were treated during the study period. In the 243 patients eligible for analysis, 68 (28%) had ILN at LRRC diagnosis. Median OS was 37 months for both the patients with and without ILN (p = 0.37). Median PFS was 14 months for the patients with ILN and 16 months for patients without ILN (p = 0.80). After correction for potential confounding, ILN present at LRRC diagnosis was not associated with impaired OS or PFS (adjusted hazards ratio [95% confidence interval]: 0.81 [0.54-1.22] and 1.09 [0.75-1.59]). The 5-year cumulative incidence of lung metastases was 31% in patients with ILN and 28% in patients without ILN (p = 0.19).

CONCLUSION: Our study shows that ILN are present in roughly a quarter of patients with LRRC. No differences in OS, PFS, or the cumulative incidence of lung metastases were found between patients with and without ILN at LRRC diagnosis. These results suggest that ILN are of little to no clinical relevance in patients with LRRC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1616-1622
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Surgical Oncology
Volume47
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021

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Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

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