An Evaluation of Treatment Strategies for Head and Neck Cancer in an African American Population

Authors: DN Ignacio, JJ Griffin, MG Daniel, MT Serlemitsos-Day, FA Lombardo, TA Alleyne


Objective: This study evaluated treatment strategies for head and neck cancers in a predominantly African American population.

Methods: Data were collected utilizing medical records and the tumour registry at the Howard University Hospital. Kaplan-Meier method was used for survival analysis and Cox proportional hazards regression analysis predicted the hazard of death.

Results: Analysis revealed that the main treatment strategy was radiation combined with platinum for all stages except stage I. Cetuximab was employed in only 1% of cases. Kaplan-Meier analysis revealed stage II patients had poorer outcome than stage IV while Cox proportional hazard regression analysis (p = 0.4662) showed that stage I had a significantly lower hazard of death than stage IV (HR = 0.314; p = 0.0272). Contributory factors included tobacco and alcohol but body mass index (BMI) was inversely related to hazard of death.

Conclusions: There was no difference in survival using any treatment modality for African Americans.

25 Mar, 2013

e-Published: 14 Nov, 2013

Keywords: Survival, head and neck cancer, combination-therapy, cetuximab, African American,

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