Background: Lymphoepithelioma-like carcinoma (LELC) of the lung occurs at a higher frequency in Asian compared with Western patients. Its association with Epstein-Barr virus varies among different ethnic groups.
Methods: Nine patients with primary LELC of the lung treated at a single institution with a multimodality approach comprised of surgery, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy are reported. Chemotherapy was comprised of cisplatin, 100 mg/m2, on Day 1 and 5-fluorouracil, 1 g/m2, on Days 2, 3, and 4.
Results: Five male and 4 female patients were treated over a 3-year period. Eight patients were non-smokers. Three patients had operable disease. Two of these patients received adjuvant radiotherapy or chemotherapy and remained free of recurrence at 18 and 20 months, respectively; 1 patient received no adjuvant treatment, and palliative chemotherapy was given for subsequent recurrent disease. Six patients had inoperable disease and received palliative chemotherapy +/- radiotherapy. Five patients had distant metastatic disease at presentation. Of the 7 patients who were evaluable for response to chemotherapy, 71.4% had a partial response and 28.6% had progressive disease. One patient who was evaluable for response to radiotherapy achieved a partial response.
Conclusions: Primary LELC of the lung has a high rate of systemic metastasis and is highly chemosensitive. A multimodality approach to the management of this disease is recommended.