Purpose: We evaluated the prognostic factors and clinical outcomes of 56 patients with vulvar cancer treated with curative radiotherapy (RT) or concurrent chemoradiotherapy.
Materials and methods: Overall survival (OS) and disease-free survival (DFS) were assessed retrospectively. Prognostic factors evaluated included age, International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics (FIGO) stage, TNM classification, tumor size, treatment modality, RT duration, and RT field. The association between the tumor human papillomavirus (HPV) status and survival was analyzed in 35 patients.
Results: During the median follow-up of 2.8 years (range, 0.3 to 18.9 years), 21 patients (37.5%) experienced treatment failure. Fifteen patients (27%) had local failure: nine (16%) local failure only, three (5%) locoregional failure, two (4%) local and distant failure, and one (2%) locoregional and distant failure. Of 56 patients, seven (13%) had persistent disease at the first follow-up at 2 months and all but one died within a year after completing RT. The 5-year OS and DFS were 51.6% and 44.0%, respectively. In multivariate analysis, clinical size ≥3 cm predicted a poor prognostic factor for DFS (p = 0.040) and age (≥70 years) was poor prognostic for DFS (p = 0.032) and OS (p = 0.048). Patients with HPV-positive tumors tended to have better 5-year OS and DFS, but the differences were not significant statistically.
Conclusion: Clinical size ≥3 cm was a significant prognostic factor for DFS. However, age was the most important prognostic factor for DFS and OS in patients treated with curative RT. Further studies are needed to determine which treatment should be considered for old age ≥70 years.
Keywords: Radiotherapy; Risk factor; Survival; Vulvar cancer.