BACKGROUND: The purpose of this study was to report the long-term outcome of patients with squamous cell cancer (SCC) of the tonsil managed by surgery followed by postoperative radiotherapy (PORT). METHODS: Eighty-eight patients treated between 1985 and 2005 were analyzed. Overall survival (OS), disease-specific survival (DSS), and recurrence-free survival (RFS) were determined by the Kaplan-Meier method. Factors predictive of outcome were determined by univariate and multivariate analysis. RESULTS: Forty-eight percent of patients had T3 to T4 disease and 75% had a positive neck. Five-year OS, DSS, and RFS were 66%, 82%, and 80%, respectively. The status of the neck was not predictive of outcome (DSS 80% for N0 vs 82% for N+; p = .97). Lymphovascular invasion was an independent predictor of OS, DSS, and RFS on multivariate analysis. CONCLUSION: Lymphovascular invasion but not pathological stage of the neck is an independent predictor of outcome in patients with tonsillar SCC. (c) 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. Head Neck, 2014.
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