Clinicopathologic characteristics and outcomes of recurrent oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma

Chase M. Heaton, Karina Yu, Sarah Calkins, Jonathan R. George, William R. Ryan, Steven J. Wang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose Positive p16 immunohistochemical staining is predictive of improved survival and response to treatment. The purpose of this study is to determine the clinicopathologic characteristics and outcomes of patients with p16+ oropharynx cancer who fail initial treatment. Materials and methods Case series including all patients with recurrent oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma from 2002 to 2014. Results Forty patients met inclusion criteria. Thirty-one (77.5%) tumors were p16+ and 9 (22.5%) were p16−. There was no difference in T/M stage at diagnosis; more patients with p16+ tumors presented initially with ≥N2 disease (p = 0.04). Regional and/or metastatic recurrence was more common in the p16+ group as compared to the p16− group — 71% vs 22.2%, p = 0.003. Outcomes for both groups were poor — 67.7% p16+ and 44.4% p16− patients died from disease. Conclusions Compared to p16− recurrent tumor patients, p16+ recurrent tumor patients were more likely to experience regional or distant metastatic recurrence. Overall outcomes for both p16+ and p16− recurrent oropharynx tumors were poor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)513-516
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican Journal of Otolaryngology - Head and Neck Medicine and Surgery
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


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