Background: This study examined the effect of metastatic mediastinal lymph node involvement on the prognosis of patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) who underwent extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) or extended pleurectomy (E/P) and also to assess the effect of metastatic mediastinal lymph node involvement on the prognosis of patients with MPM in these group of patients.
Methods: This retrospective study included 84 patients with MPM (66 men [78.6%] and 18 women [21.4%]) who underwent EPP (n = 44) or E/P (n = 40) at our institution between January 2001 and July 2019. Survival analyses were performed according to histopathology, nodal status, and surgical approach.
Results: In the EPP group, patients with T2-N2 status had a significantly better mean survival (17 ± 2.1 months) than patients with T3-N2 (7.3 ± 1.6 months) or T4-N2 (3.2 ± 1.1 months) status (p = .001). In the E/P group, patients with T2-N2 status had a mean survival of 18 ± 1.1 months, while patients with T3-N2 and T4-N2 status had mean survival durations of 6.6 ± 1.6 and 4.8 ± 1.2 months, respectively (p = .159). In both treatment groups, the survival rates of patients with epithelial tumors were better than those of patients with non-epithelial tumors, independent of N status. None of the patients with N2 disease survived until 5 years postoperatively.
Conclusion: In summary, our results suggested that mediastinal lymph node metastasis negatively influenced the prognosis of patients with T3 MPM, regardless of treatment by EPP or E/P. Under these circumstances, preoperative cervical mediastinoscopy or endobronchial ultrasound-guided transbronchial needle aspiration may be considered for patients with high-stage MPM who are scheduled for surgery with curative intent. In our study, N2 status was spotted as a significant factor affecting survival, nevertheless its significance in survival of pleural mesothelioma patients should be analyzed in multi-centered studies.
Keywords: Malignant pleural mesothelioma; N2 disease; extended pleurectomy; extrapleural pneumonectomy.