Article Abstract

Characteristics of gastric cancer recurrence five or more years after curative gastrectomy

Authors: Chang-Hyun Shin, Woo-Yong Lee, Seung-Woo Hong, Yeo-Goo Chang


Objective: To investigate the characteristics of recurrences that occurred 5 or more years after curative resection for gastric cancer.
Methods: We analyzed recurrences among 1,299 patients with gastric cancer who underwent curative operations at the Department of Surgery, Inje University Seoul Paik Hospital between September 1998 and December 2002. Recurrences were classified as within 2 years (early), 2–5 years (intermediate), and more than 5 years (late) after gastrectomy. The clinicopathologic findings of the patients with late recurrence were compared with those of patients in the other two recurrence groups, with special reference to the patterns of recurrence. Both univariate and multivariate analyses were performed, incorporating factors such as operation type, T-stage, N-stage, stage, lymphatic invasion, neural invasion, histology, tumor size, and recurrence site.
Results: At the time of last follow-up, recurrence occurred in 266 (20.5%) patients. Recurrence times were classified as <2 years (182 patients), 2–5 years (61 patients), or >5 years (23 patients). The late recurrence rate was 8.6%. The occurrence of recurrence >5 years after gastrectomy was significantly correlated with age, operation type, T-stage, N-stage, stage, lymphatic invasion, neural invasion, histology, tumor size, location and recurrence site (P<0.05). The main recurrence patterns in the 23 patients with late recurrence were locoregional metastasis (10 patients, 43.5%), peritoneal seeding (8 patients, 34.8%), hematogenous metastasis (2 patients, 8.7%), and multiple metastasis (3 patients, 13.0%). A multivariate analysis showed that larger tumor size and younger age were independent prognostic factors for late recurrence. Additionally, locoregional and peritoneal recurrences were significantly more common than hematogenous recurrences.
Conclusions: Although late recurrence was uncommon, younger age and larger tumor size were associated with high risk. Follow-up surveillance is recommended for locoregional and peritoneal metastasis.

Keywords: Curative surgery; gastric cancer; gastrectomy; late recurrence; recurrence