Management of sinonasal cancers: Survey of UK practice and literature overview

Eur J Surg Oncol. 2022 Jan;48(1):32-43. doi: 10.1016/j.ejso.2021.11.124. Epub 2021 Nov 19.


Introduction: Sinonasal malignancy is a rare and heterogenous disease, with limited evidence to guide management. This report summarises the findings of a UK survey and expert workshop discussion which took place to inform design of a proposed UK trial to assess proton beam therapy versus intensity-modulated radiation therapy.

Method: A multidisciplinary working group constructed an online survey to assess current approaches within the UK to surgical and non-surgical practice. Head and neck clinical oncologists, ear nose and throat (ENT) and oral-maxillofacial (OMF) surgeons were invited to participate in the 42-question survey in September 2020. The Royal College of Radiologists Consensus model was adopted in establishing categories to indicate strength of response. An expert panel conducted a virtual workshop in November 2020 to discuss areas of disagreement.

Results: A survey was sent to 140 UK-based clinicians with 63 responses (45% response rate) from 30 centres, representing a broad geographical spread. Participants comprised 35 clinical oncologists (56%) and 29 surgeons (44%; 20 ENT and 9 OMF surgeons). There were variations in preferred sequence and combination of treatment modalities for locally advanced maxillary squamous cell carcinoma and sinonasal undifferentiated carcinoma. There was discordant surgical management of the orbit, dura, and neck. There was lack of consensus for radiotherapy in post-operative dose fractionation, target volume delineation, use of multiple dose levels and treatment planning approach to organs-at-risk.

Conclusion: There was wide variation across UK centres in the management of sinonasal carcinomas. There is need to standardise UK practice and develop an evidence base for treatment.

Keywords: Maxilla; Radiotherapy; Sinonasal cancer; Surgery.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Carcinoma / therapy
  • Chemotherapy, Adjuvant / methods*
  • Dose Fractionation, Radiation
  • Humans
  • Lymph Nodes / pathology
  • Maxillary Sinus Neoplasms / therapy
  • Neck Dissection
  • Nose Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Oncologists
  • Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons
  • Otolaryngologists
  • Otorhinolaryngologic Surgical Procedures / methods*
  • Paranasal Sinus Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Practice Patterns, Physicians'*
  • Radiotherapy, Adjuvant / methods*
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma of Head and Neck / therapy*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • United Kingdom