Necessity of Screening for Multiple Primary Cancers in Patients with Esophageal Cancer

Tsuyoshi Noguchi, MD,1 Tsuyoshi Kato, MD,1 Shinsuke Takeno, MD,1 Shinsuke Wada, MD,1 Shigetaka Yanagisawa, MD,2 Masashi Suzuki, MD,3 and Yuzo Uchida, MD1

This study divided patients with esophageal cancer and multiple primary cancers into two groups, a head and neck cancer (HNC) group and a non-head and neck cancer (NHNC) group. These groups were then evaluated on the basis of clinical and pathological studies. Among 92 patients with esophageal cancer as one of multiple primary cancers, 38 (41.8%) were assigned to the HNC group. The following characteristics distinguished patients in the HNC group from those in the NHNC group: (1) younger age; (2) shorter interval between diagnosis of metachronous cancers; (3) many displayed superficial esophageal cancer. Among the cases in which esophageal cancer was discovered synchronously with head and neck cancer, head and neck cancers were discovered before esophageal cancer; and (4) many patients displayed esophageal dysplasia, and many had multiple esophageal cancers. In the present study, we demonstrated the necessity of screening for multiple primary cancers in patients with esophageal cancer. (Ann Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2002; 8: 336-336)

Key words: screening, multiple primary cancers, esophageal cancer, head and neck cancer

From Department of Oncological Science (1Surgery II), (2Oral and Maxillo-Facial Surgery ) and Immunology and Allergy (3Otorhinolaryngology), Oita Medical University, Oita, Japan

Received August 12, 2002; accepted for publication October 2, 2002
Address reprint requests to Tsuyoshi Noguchi, MD: Department of Oncological Science (Surgery II), Oita Medical University, Idaigaoka 1-1, Hasama-machi, Oita 879-5593, Japan.