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BACKGROUND: The histologic determinants of survival after surgical resection of stage II nonsmall cell lung cancer are poorly understood. We analyzed the prognostic significance of a number of histologic features after complete resection of T1-2N1M0 nonsmall cell cancer of the lung. METHODS: The case notes and histology of all patients who underwent a potentially curative surgical resection for T1-2N1M0 nonsmall cell carcinoma of the lung between 1991 and 1997 were reviewed retrospectively. The following histologic factors were recorded: histologic type of tumor; number of nodes with metastatic deposits together with their nodal station; the presence of vascular invasion, visceral pleural involvement, and cellular necrosis; and grade of tumor. The results from 98 patients were analyzed. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to identify prognostic factors. RESULTS: Univariate analysis showed that only three factors had a statistically significant correlation with a poor prognosis: vascular invasion (p = 0.002), nonsquamous histology (p = 0.005), and visceral pleural involvement (p = 0.002). Multivariate analysis revealed that all three factors were significant independent adverse prognostic indicators. CONCLUSIONS: Visceral pleural involvement, nonsquamous histology, and vascular invasion are all significant adverse prognostic factors after surgical resection of T1-2N1M0 nonsmall cell cancer of the lung. These findings conflict with previously published reports, and we advocate a prospective, large-scale study in order to clarify the prognostic significance of histologic characteristics in stage II disease.

Original publication




Journal article


Ann Thorac Surg

Publication Date





1173 - 1178


Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung, Humans, Lung Neoplasms, Lymphatic Metastasis, Multivariate Analysis, Prognosis, Retrospective Studies, Survival Rate