Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Tumor measurements predict survival in lung cancer patients

Date:
August 19, 2013
Source:
UT Southwestern Medical Center
Summary:
For the two-thirds of lung cancer patients with locally advanced or metastatic disease, tumor size is not used currently to predict overall survival times. A new study, however, led by UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers has shown that even in advanced stages total tumor size can have a major impact on survival.

For the two-thirds of lung cancer patients with locally advanced or metastatic disease, tumor size is not used currently to predict overall survival times. A new study, however, led by UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers has shown that even in advanced stages total tumor size can have a major impact on survival.

Using data from a National Cancer Institute-sponsored Phase 3 trial involving 850 patients with advanced lung cancer, Dr. David Gerber, assistant professor of internal medicine at UT Southwestern, and colleagues from other academic medical centers reviewed the recorded total tumor dimensions -- which may include not only the primary tumor, but also those in lymph nodes and other sites of metastatic disease. Dr. Gerber's team found that total tumor measurements greater than 3 inches predicted shorter survival times.

"The traditional view is that once a cancer has spread to the lymph nodes or to other organs, tumor dimensions are unlikely to affect patient outcomes," explained Dr. Gerber, a member of the Harold C. Simmons Comprehensive Cancer Center and lead author of the study. "However, the survival differences we found are not only statistically significant, but also clinically meaningful."

In the study, published online in the British Journal of Cancer, the average total tumor dimension was 7.5 centimeters, or roughly 3 inches. Patients with total tumor dimensions above this size lived an average of 9.5 months. Patients with total dimensions below 7.5 centimeters lived an average of 12.6 months, representing a 30 percent increase in survival.

When total tumor dimension was further divided into quartiles, the survival differences were even greater, ranging from 8.5 months to 13.3 months. These differences persisted even when multiple prognostic factors, such as age, gender, and type of treatment, were included in the analysis.

Dr. Gerber explained that, if confirmed in other populations, these findings could affect future clinical trials and patient care.

"Ultimately, clinical researchers might consider this information as they review outcome data, making sure survival differences are attributed to treatment effects and not to baseline differences in total tumor dimensions," he said. "Practicing physicians may also use the information to estimate prognosis."

Precise measurements of lung cancer tumors can be used in tailoring therapy and helping doctors steer patients to the best clinical trials, he added.

While the study did not seek to explain the biological reasons why this size association may hold true, a number of preclinical observations link tumor size with therapeutic resistance. It is generally thought that as tumors grow, the proportion of cells resistant to chemotherapy increases. Larger cancers may also have relatively poor blood supply and more pronounced gradients in interstitial pressure, hypoxia, and acidity, which may influence tumor cell sensitivity to chemotherapeutics and radiation treatments.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by UT Southwestern Medical Center. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. D E Gerber, S E Dahlberg, A B Sandler, D H Ahn, J H Schiller, J R Brahmer, D H Johnson. Baseline tumour measurements predict survival in advanced non-small cell lung cancer. British Journal of Cancer, 2013; DOI: 10.1038/bjc.2013.472

Cite This Page:

UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Tumor measurements predict survival in lung cancer patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 19 August 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130819141607.htm>.
UT Southwestern Medical Center. (2013, August 19). Tumor measurements predict survival in lung cancer patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130819141607.htm
UT Southwestern Medical Center. "Tumor measurements predict survival in lung cancer patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130819141607.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Xtreme Eating: Your Daily Caloric Intake All On One Plate

Newsy (July 30, 2014) The Center for Science in the Public Interest released its 2014 list of single meals with whopping calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile: iPhone Android Web
      Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins