Biomedical Research

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Adenoid cystic carcinoma of nasopharynx: a single-center retrospective study

Purpose: To summarize the characteristics of Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma (ACC) arising from nasopharynx by analysing 28 cases in a single center, in order to enhance the care of patients with these unusual neoplasms.

Patients and Methods: This was a retrospective analysis of 28 patients with nasopharyngeal ACC who were treated in Huai’an cancer hospital between 1997 and 2011. Kaplan-Meier estimation was used to calculate Overall Survival (OS).

Results: Most patients had locally-advanced lesions at the time of diagnosis. The most common presenting complaints were nasal obstruction and blood-stained snot. The peak incidence of the patients in our study is the 5th decade. In this study, 11 of 28 patients received radical surgery, and the rest received non-surgery treatment (chemoradiotherapy or radiotherapy alone). The 5 y OS rate in surgical treatment group was higher than in nonsurgical treatment group (100% vs. 47.1%) and the survival curves showed OS in surgical group was better than that in non-surgical group (χ2=3.844, P=0.05).

Conclusion: Adenoid Cystic Carcinoma (ACC) in the nasopharynx is an extremely rare entity. Surgery followed by postoperative radiotherapy is the main stay of treatment. Locally advanced patients may also benefit from surgical treatment. Our data showed that treatment approach was an important factor affecting the prognosis.

Author(s): Shujun Ding, Tongai Jin, Min Xu, Yong Liang, Shoufeng Wang, Lingyun Lv, De Huai