Background: Oligometastasis is a good prognostic indicator when compared to widely metastatic disease in malignancies of other organ systems. We hypothesized that oligometastasis in human papillomavirus (HPV)-positive oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) would be associated with better overall survival. Methods: This is a retrospective review of all HPV-positive oropharyngeal SCC treated at one center with at least 1-year of follow-up. Patients were stratified into 2 cohorts: oligometastasis (1-2 metastases, confined to 1 organ system) or polymetastasis (>2 metastases or multiple organ involvement) with cohorts compared for time to distant metastasis and overall survival after metastasis. Results: Thirty-eight of 506 patients (7.5%) developed metachronous distant metastasis; 12 developed oligometastasis and 26 developed polymetastasis. Median overall survival after oligometastasis was significantly longer than polymetastasis at 45 months (95% confidence interval [CI] 19 months - not reached) and 10 months (95% CI 5-24 months; P =.00028). Conclusion: Oligometastasis in metastatic HPV-positive oropharyngeal SCC portends a better prognosis than polymetastasis.
- human papillomavirus
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