Nasopharyngeal cancer (NPC) is a common malignancy in Southeast Asia with a high mortality rate. Previous studies have shown that the patient survival rate is <80% worldwide. At the Dharmais Cancer Hospital, NPC is the first of the top 10 diseases with the highest rate of stage III cancer progression.
This study aims to determine the 5-year survival rate of patients with NPC based on tumor response and their prognostic factors after receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy, followed by chemoradiation.
The records of 261 patients between January 2009 and December 2013 were retrospectively analyzed. All patients with NPC who received neoadjuvant chemotherapy, followed by chemoradiation, at the Dharmais Cancer Hospital from 2009 to 2013 were identified. Patients with metastasis were excluded. The primary endpoint of this study was overall survival, which was defined as the time from the date of treatment to the date of death. The survival curve was analyzed using the Kaplan-Meier method. The Cox proportional hazard model was used for the multivariate analysis of prognostic factors.
The tumor response rates for patients with complete response (CR), partial response (PR), and progressive disease (PD) were 33.7, 45.2, and 21.2%, respectively. The 5-year overall survival rate was 38.6%. The 5-year survival rates based on tumor response among CR, PR, and PD patients were 71.0, 30.4, and 10.6%, respectively. The significant independent prognostic factors were tumor response, educational background, job, alcohol consumption, clinical stage, and prompt treatment.
The survival probability of patients with NPC receiving neoadjuvant chemotherapy, followed by chemoradiation, was higher in the CR group than in the PR and PD groups. This confirms that early detection can improve the patient’s survival. Long-term follow-up is required to determine the factors influencing tumor response in NPC.

© 2020 S. Karger AG, Basel.