Background: Microvessel density has been shown to give prognostic information in a variety of solid tumors, but its role in prostatic carcinoma needs further elucidation.
Methods: Intratumoral density of von Willebrand factor-positive microvessels was assessed in 98 cases of prostatic carcinoma, diagnosed at transurethral resection of the prostate (TURP) between 1975-1983, using two methods: 1) volume density of microvessels and 2) vascular count in the 2-3 most vascularized fields.
Results: Volume density and vascular counts were highly correlated. In Kaplan-Meyer analysis, mean cancer-specific survival time for patients with a vascular count < 135 was significantly longer than for patients with a vascular count > 135 (P = 0.0064). The same results applied to patients with WHO grade II tumors (P = 0.01). Excluding metastasis in a multivariate analysis, both tumor stage and vascular count had an independent predictive value for cancer-specific survival in patients with WHO grade II tumors.
Conclusions: Microvessel density may predict cancer-specific survival in prostatic carcinoma.