Background and objectives: Squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity is one of the ten most frequent cancers in developed countries. The purpose of this study was to identify predictors for recurrence in oral squamous cell carcinoma.
Methods: One hundred eighteen patients treated between the years 1998–2003 were included in an ambispective cohort study. Variables included gender, age, tumor site, macroscopic pattern of the lesion, coexisting disorders (diabetes, hepatic and heart disorders, other tumors/diseases), degree of differentiation, and pathologic TNM stage.
Results: The mean age of the sample was 61 years. the most frequent site was tongue (39%) with an ulcerated pattern (69.1%.) Tumor recurrence was 44.9% during the follow-up period. The mean period that had elapsed before recurrence was 15 months (1.5–81.8). Multivariate Cox regression analysis indicated the presence of a coexisting disorder ( p = 0.022) as the most relevant prognostic factor for relapse.
Conclusions: In the present study, the existence of additional disorders had an important weight in the multivariate model, because patients with coexisting pathologies showed shorter recurrence free intervals. According to the results of this analysis the presence of a simultaneous disorder could help predict patient survival.
Key words : oral cancer; recurrence; prognostic factors