The increasing occurrence of radiation-induced second primary squamous cell carcinoma of the oral cavity (RISCCO) after radiotherapy for nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) has become a noteworthy complication that can influence long-term survival. This study aimed to analyze the associations of clinicopathologic characteristics with prognostic factors among patients who developed RISCCO after radiotherapy for NPC.
A total of 41,446 NPC patients admitted to Sun Yat-sen University Cancer Center (SYSUCC) between August 1989 and January 2019 were reviewed. Among these patients, 88 RISCCO patients who satisfied the inclusion criteria were included in the study.
During our study, the incidence of RISCCO after radiotherapy was 0.21% (88/41,446) among NPC patients at SYSUCC. The latency period ranged from 1.0 to 34.0 years (median, 9.0 years), and the latency of RISCCO was notably shorter for patients who received intensity-modulated radiation therapy than that for patients who received conventional radiotherapy using cobalt-60 or 6-MV X-rays (median, 4.0 years vs. 11.0 years, P = 0.013). The 1-, 3-, and 5-year overall survival (OS) rates for the entire cohort of 88 patients were 79.0%, 46.6%, and 35.2%, respectively. The 5-year OS rate for the 79 patients who received treatment was 45.7%, and the 5-year OS rate for the 9 patients who refused treatment was 0%. T classification and surgery were identified as independent prognostic factors associated with a high OS rate.
Surgery as the first-choice treatment may improve survival and prognosis. A long-term follow-up is needed for early detection of RISCCO in NPC patients.

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