Upper Tract Urothelial Carcinomas: Prognostic Factors and Outcomes in Patients With Non–Lymph Node Distant Metastasis Journal Articles uri icon

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  • BACKGROUND: Upper tract urothelial carcinomas (UTUCs) are increasingly recognized as separate malignancies. Additional insight into clinical outcomes and key prognostic factors are needed. OBJECTIVES: To detail outcomes of patients with UTUCs recurring after radical nephroureterectomy (RNU) and to determine a risk score that predicts outcomes of patients with non-lymph node distant metastasis. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: Chart review of all patients who had an extraurothelial recurrence after RNU for UTUC at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute between 2009 and 2014. OUTCOME MEASUREMENTS AND STATISTICAL ANALYSIS: Median overall survival defined as time from chemotherapy for distant relapse to death. Prognostic relevance of performance status, hemoglobin, and receipt of cisplatin were assessed by Cox regression model. RESULTS AND LIMITATIONS: A total of 102 patients were identified, 57 of whom had non-lymph node distant metastases at relapse; 45 received chemotherapy. Median follow-up was 29.8 months; median overall survival was 14.7 months. Objective response rate to any chemotherapy in the first-line setting was only 22%. Hemoglobin > 11 g/dL and receipt of cisplatin was associated with numerically longer median survival but did not reach statistical significance in univariate and multivariate analysis. Prognostic risk score scale including hemoglobin < 11 g/dL and receipt of cisplatin was inversely associated with survival, with scores of 0, 1, and 2 leading to median survival of 19.0, 14.9, and 7.2 months (P = .38), respectively. CONCLUSIONS: Advanced UTUC portends a poor prognosis, and most patients cannot receive cisplatin-based chemotherapy. A risk score that includes anemia and receipt of cisplatin helps stratify patients with distant metastasis for inclusion into eventual clinical trials. More studies are needed to validate these findings. PATIENT SUMMARY: Metastatic UTUC is an aggressive disease, where anemia and ineligibility to receive cisplatin are adverse features associated with shorter survival.


  • Sevillano, Elena
  • Werner, Lillian
  • Bossé, Dominick
  • Lalani, Aly-Khan
  • Wankowicz, Stephanie AM
  • de Velasco, Guillermo
  • Farina, Matthew
  • Lundgren, Kevin
  • Choueiri, Toni K
  • González del Alba, Aranzazu
  • Bellmunt, Joaquim

publication date

  • December 2017