Transoral laser microsurgery for glottic cancer in the elderly: Efficacy and safety

Head Neck. 2019 Jun;41(6):1816-1823. doi: 10.1002/hed.25616. Epub 2019 Jan 12.


Background: Data about the results of transoral laser microsurgery (TLM) in elderly patients are limited.

Methods: A retrospective study of 72 consecutive cases of glottic carcinoma (63 pT1 and 9 pT2 cases) in elderly patients (≥70 years old, mean 76 years) treated with TLM was made. A systematic review of the literature was performed.

Results: Six patients (8%) had postoperative complications, but no treatment-related deaths were observed. Local recurrences occurred in 12 patients (16.5%): nine with pT1 (14%) and three with pT2 (33%) tumors. Five-year disease-specific survival (DSS), overall survival, and laryngectomy-free survival were 95%, 68%, and 88%, respectively. The literature review indicated that TLM is safe and effective treatment for these patients, with few complications and good local control (>85%) and DSS (>90%) rates.

Conclusions: Our results and the information from the literature show that TLM for glottic cancer in elderly patients can lead to satisfactory treatment results.

Keywords: complications; elderly; laryngeal cancer; transoral laser microsurgery.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / pathology
  • Carcinoma, Squamous Cell / surgery
  • Female
  • Glottis*
  • Humans
  • Laryngeal Neoplasms / pathology
  • Laryngeal Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Laryngectomy / adverse effects*
  • Laser Therapy / adverse effects*
  • Male
  • Microsurgery / adverse effects*
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Treatment Outcome