Background: In the literature, the interdependence of variables, including stage, sex, age, tumor size, therapy, and survival, is complex. The size variable has heretofore received relatively little emphasis.
Method: This was a retrospective evaluation of 337 patients with kidney cancer treated at the University of Illinois Affiliated Hospitals. Data were collected on stage, sex, age, tumor size, TNM stage, therapy, and survival. Statistical analyses included Kaplan-Meier 5-year survivals, as well as multivariate analysis utilizing the Cox regression model. A subset of 110 patients with TNM Stage IV disease is further evaluated employing a multivariate analysis. The principal form of therapy was nephrectomy.
Result: Five-year survivals by stage varied from 100% for Stage I, 96% for Stage II, 59% for Stage III, to 16% for Stage IV. In the subset of 110 patients with TNM Stage IV disease, those with a single metastasis had better survivals than those with two or more. Those having nephrectomy had better survivals (P < 0.05). Therapy (in addition to nephrectomy) was curative (defined as cytotoxic chemotherapy or immunotherapy) in 40 patients and palliative (defined as radiation to bone metastases, hormone therapy, or supportive) in 70 patients. Multivariate analysis of TNM Stage IV variable differences indicated that only tumor size differences and nephrectomy significantly affected survival.
Conclusions: Of importance is the observation that among these patients. Survival is directly correlated with tumor size.