Dr Kötz and colleagues from England investigated if delays between the diagnosis of cancer of the esophagus and surgical resection influence long-term survival.
Data held by the West Midlands Cancer Intelligence Unit between 1995 and 2000 was reviewed.
The researchers identified 800 patients who underwent esophagectomy for a diagnosis of cancer of the esophagus or esophagogastric junction.
The research team included 632 patients treated with curative intention.
The patients had not received neo-adjuvant treatment in the form of radio- or chemotherapy were included in the analysis.
|Adverse prognostic factors include incomplete resection|
|British Journal of Cancer|
The time interval between histological diagnosis and surgical resection was stratified into 3, 3 to 6, 6 to 9 and more than 9 weeks.
The team used Cox proportional hazard model to test for the independent effect of delays.
The researchers found no difference in long-term survival according to the delay between histological diagnosis and surgical resection.
On multivariate analysis adverse prognostic factors were advanced age, incomplete resection and lymph node involvement.
Patients with a longer delay had a higher rate of complete tumor resection.
The team suggests that these patients were more appropriately selected for the surgical treatment approach.
Dr Kötz's team comments, “We have found no evidence that shorter delays from the date of histological diagnosis to surgical resection are beneficial to long-term survival.”