Purpose: This study analyzes the incidence, risk factors, treatment results, and prognosis of local recurrence at the pharynx after total laryngectomy for laryngeal carcinoma.
Patients and methods: The records of 292 patients who underwent total laryngectomy for the treatment of laryngeal carcinoma between January 1978 and December 1990 were reviewed.
Results: Of these 292 patients, there were 24 patients who developed local recurrence at the pharynx. The 5-year actuarial cumulative local recurrence rate was 10%. There were 17 cases of pharyngeal recurrence alone, five cases of pharyngeal and nodal recurrence, one case of pharyngeal and tracheostomal recurrence, and one case of pharyngeal and distant metastasis. Ten (42%) patients were salvaged surgically; the 5-year actuarial survival rate after surgical salvage was 53%. The other 14 patients were treated with palliative treatment, and all died of tumor, with the longest period of survival being 28 months.
Conclusion: Surgical salvage of pharyngeal recurrence has acceptable results. Close monitoring of patients is important to have an early diagnosis of salvageable recurrence.