Vascular invasion predicts advanced tumor characteristics in papillary thyroid carcinoma

Am J Surg. 2022 Mar;223(3):487-491. doi: 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2021.11.038. Epub 2021 Dec 9.


Background: The clinical impact of vascular invasion in Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma (PTC) is not well understood. Our aim was to determine if there was an association between vascular invasion and other tumor characteristics and patient outcomes in PTC.

Methods: A retrospective chart review was performed of 536 patients with PTC between January 2007-December 2011. Patient demographics, comorbidities, tumor characteristics, and outcomes were collected.

Results: Vascular invasion was associated with lymphatic invasion, capsular invasion, extrathyroidal extension, and the presence of positive lymph nodes. Logistic regression revealed that tumor size was a predictor of vascular invasion. Vascular invasion in PTC tumors was associated with higher tumor recurrence rates, but there were no differences in mortality.

Conclusion: This study indicates that vascular invasion in PTC is associated with other aggressive pathologic features and an increased recurrence rate. For these reasons, vascular invasion should be an important tumor characteristic when determining extent of treatment.

Keywords: Papillary thyroid carcinoma; Recurrence; Vascular invasion.

MeSH terms

  • Carcinoma, Papillary* / pathology
  • Humans
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / pathology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thyroid Cancer, Papillary / surgery
  • Thyroid Neoplasms* / pathology
  • Thyroid Neoplasms* / surgery
  • Thyroidectomy