Purpose: Intensive postoperative surveillance is associated with improved survival and recommended for patients with late stage (stage IIB and III) colon cancer. We hypothesized that stage I and IIA colon cancer patients would experience similar benefits. Patients and Methods: Secondary analysis of data from the Clinical Outcomes of Surgical Therapy trial was performed by analyzing results according to TNM stage; early (stage I and IIA, 537 patients) and late (stage IIB and III, 254 patients) stage disease. Five-year recurrence rates were higher in patients with late (35.7%) versus early stage disease (9.5%). Early and late stage salvage rates, recurrence patterns and methods of first detection were compared by χ2 test. Results: Salvage rates for early- and late-stage disease patients with recurrence were the same (35.9% v 37%; P = .9, respectively). Median survival after second surgery after recurrence was 51.2 and 35.8 months for early- and late-stage patients, respectively. Single sites of first recurrence did not significantly differ between early and late stage, but multiple sites of recurrence occurred less often in early-stage patients (3.6% v 28.6%, for early v late, respectively; P < .001). Methods of first detection of recurrence were not significantly different: carcinoembryonic antigen (29.1% v 37.4%), computed tomography scan (23.6% v 26.4%), chest x-ray (7.3% v 12.1%), and colonoscopy (12.7% v 8.8%), for early versus late stage disease, respectively. Conclusion: Patients with early-stage colon cancer have similar sites of recurrence, and receive similar benefit from postrecurrence therapy as late-stage patients; implementation of surveillance guidelines for early-stage patients is appropriate.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research