Recurrent parotid gland carcinoma: how effective is salvage surgery?

Nisa Hernández, Lluís; Borner, Urs; Dür, Cilgia; Arnold, Andreas Michael; Giger, Roland (2018). Recurrent parotid gland carcinoma: how effective is salvage surgery? European archives of oto-rhino-laryngology, 275(2), pp. 507-513. Springer 10.1007/s00405-017-4829-8

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OBJECTIVE Recurrent parotid gland carcinomas (PGCs) are poorly characterized and studies focusing on this topic are rare due to their low incidence. The goal of this study is to analyze the therapeutic strategies, prognostic factors, and oncological outcomes of a series of patients with recurrent PGCs. PATIENTS AND METHODS Retrospective chart review (1997-2012) of patients with recurrent PGCs was initially treated with curative intent. RESULTS We identified 20 patients with recurrent PGCs. Eleven patients presented isolated local, regional, or distant metastases, while the rest had recurrences in multiple sites. Recurrent tumors tended to present more advanced T-stage (p = 0.01) and overall stage (p < 0.001), but not N-stage (p = 0.74) when compared to the initial tumors. Half the patients (50%) had distant metastases at the moment of recurrence diagnosis, and another three developed them after attempted salvage surgery. Only 8/20 patients with isolated local or regional recurrences were surgically salvaged with extended revision parotidectomy and neck dissection, respectively. The remaining 12 patients were managed on palliative basis. Overall survival (31.70 months vs. 20.73 months) and progression-free survival (28.70 months vs. 13.61 months) were not significantly different in patients managed surgically vs. palliatively. CONCLUSION Recurrent PGCs are aggressive neoplasms with a high rate of distant metastases. Surgical salvage can be considered in patients with limited local and/or regional recurrences. The alternative to surgical salvage is palliative management with different chemotherapeutic regimens. Survival does not differ between the two strategies in the present series.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Head Organs and Neurology (DKNS) > Clinic of Ear, Nose and Throat Disorders (ENT)
04 Faculty of Medicine > Department of Haematology, Oncology, Infectious Diseases, Laboratory Medicine and Hospital Pharmacy (DOLS) > Clinic of Radiation Oncology

UniBE Contributor:

Nisa Hernández, Lluís; Borner, Urs; Dür, Cilgia; Arnold, Andreas Michael and Giger, Roland


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Beatrice Scheidegger

Date Deposited:

30 Jan 2018 12:36

Last Modified:

29 Oct 2019 04:02

Publisher DOI:


PubMed ID:


Uncontrolled Keywords:

Outcomes Palliative therapy Parotid cancer Recurrence Salvage surgery




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