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Korean Journal of Head & Neck Oncology 1998;14(2):220-227.
Published online November 30, 1998.
Treatment of Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer
Hang Seok Chang;Jong Ho Yoon;Woong Youn Chung;Mi Kyung Lee;Cheong Soo Park
미분화 갑상선암의 치료
The clinical and pathological features of 35 cases of anaplastic thyroid cancer were studied. These tumors occurred in 12 men and 23 women ranging in age from 19 to 83 years(mean age; 61.7 years). A rapidly enlarging thyroid mass was the most common presentation. The duration of the presence of mass varied from 20 days to 12 months with an average of 2.7 months. Systemic metastasis at the time of initial examination was found in 14 patients(40.0%) and the lung was the most common site of involvement. The overall rate of distant metastasis was about 65.7%. The tumors were subdivided morphologically into giant cell type of 10 cases, spindle cell type of 7 cases, epidermoid cell type of 1 cases, and mixed giant cell and spindle cell type of 5 cases. The mean survival period of 6 among 35 patients who had biopsy alone was 1.4 months. The 22 patients underwent the incomplete combined treatment modalities (palliative surgery with or without chemotherpy or radiation therapy) survived for a mean period of 3.0 months, among them, 7 patients who had surgery combined with chemotherapy and radiation therapy showed mean survival period of 3.7 months. The mean survival of 7 patients who had complete combined treatment modality(curative surgery combined with chemotherapy and hyperfractionated radiation therapy) was 6.6 months, only one patient survived for 21 months and one patient has been alive for 1 month after operation, and the others survived for a mean period of 4.8 months. So far, as of July 31, 1998, 34 patients among 35 were died(one has been survived for 1 month) despite the various treatment modalities, and the main cause of death were failure of local control and systemic metastasis. None of the various treatment modalities gave consistently favourable results. However, a combination of surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy seemed to have a slight positive effect on survival. Furthermore, the aggressive treatment modalities will be indicated only in the early diagnosed and minimal cases.
Key Words: Anaplastic thyroid cancer, Treatment


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